Just at the final sprint for Frankfurt Book Fair, we are glad to annouce the sale of world Spanish rights of this novel by Swedish author Steve Sem-Sandberg to Literatura Mondadori (an imprint of Random House Mondadori). The deal has been made on behalf of Nordin Agency AB, Sweden.
Literatura Mondadori is the Spanish publisher of acclaimed authors such as: Philip Roth, Cormac McCarthy, Gabriel García Márquez, JM Coetzee, Orham Pamuk, David Foster Wallace, Dave Eggers or Javier Cercas.
SalmaiaLit also handles Portuguese (Portugal & Brazil) and Catalan rights.
Below you have information about this novel, which we hope will become a success in every country where it will be published!
* The portrait of a controversial man that is being compared to J. Littell ‘Les Bienveillantes’
*Already sold to: Aschehoug (Norway), Gyldendal (Denmark), Ambo Anthos (Holland), Marsilio (Italy), Literatura Mondadori (Spanish), Kinnaret (Israel), Paseka (Chzeck Rep.), and offers not yet closed from other territories.
DE FATTIGA I LODZ (The Destitutes Of Lodz), by Steve Sem-Sandberg
Albert Bonniers Förlag, Sweden, 2009, 662 pp.
The Destitutes of Lodz is a novel about the Jewish ghetto that was established by the Nazis in the Polish city of Lodz. It is the story of Mordechai Chaim Rumkowski, the Nazi-appointed Jewish leader of this camp, and his ambiguous and shady role in the annihilation of the Polish Jews.
In the summer of 1944, Himmler gives orders to “liquidate” the ghetto. As transportation to the Nazi death camps increases, so does the ghettos inhabitants’ knowledge of them. Slowly but surely the Lodz ghetto, with its 250.000 people, is emptied of all citizens and Rumkowski is finally forced to leave his safe haven. In August 1944, shortly after leaving the ghetto, he is killed in Auschwitz, alongside his entire family.
Sem-Sandberg’s novel describes the life in the sealed off town district. It speaks of the imposing German cadaver discipline, the gruesome slave labour, the starvation, and the futile escape attempts. Paradoxically, in the emergence of the collective and craftily subversive Ghetto Chronicles - the author’s main source for this novel - the reader is also shown the art of survival, and man’s remarkable will to live.
In The Destitutes of Lodz, Steve Sem-Sandberg takes his reader on a powerfully moving journey into the cold realities of the Holocaust.
Choice of REVIEWS:
* This is real literature. A great work of fiction. Steve Sem-Sandberg steps forward as a worthy and completed successor to, shall we say, a PO Enquist – with whom he shares not only the ability to make poetry out of prose but also a fascination for treachery’s and betrayal’s lowest sediment. Per Svensson, Dagens Nyheter.
* Perhaps the very first holocaust account that dares to step away from the black and white perspective. In the hands of Sweden’s foremost European storyteller, the truth is not always what it seems. Daniel Sjölin, Babel
* Steve Sem-Sandberg’s latest novel “The Destitutes of Lodz” – massive in size but polished to a light conciseness in every last detail – is also a majestic portrayal where documented facts create the foundation for fictions insight into historical fate. Mikael van Ries, Svenska Dagbladet
About the author:
Steve Sem-Sandberg (b. 1958) is one of Sweden’s greatest literary talents. He divides his time between Vienna and Stockholm. This cosmopolitan author has been nominated for the August Prize, the Swedish Radio Literary Award and the prestigious Nordic Council Literary Award. In 2007 he was the first person to receive the esteemed Sorescu Award and was recently honoured with De Nios Grand Award, with the following motivation: "for an advanced literary craftsmanship, characterized by an intellectual mindset, a historical feeling of presence and insightful character portraits."
His trilogy on the three most infamous women of the 20 th Century (Milena Jesenská, Ulrike Meinhof and Lou Andreas Salomé) won great acclaim in Scandinavia. Härifrån till allmänningen (From Here to the Great Commons), published in 2005 and set during the interesting period between 1965 and 1975, is a more commercial title that received outstanding reviews. With his latest novel De fattiga i Lodz (The Destitutes of Lodz), 2009, Steve Sem-Sandberg has been highly praised in the Swedish media. The novel took him five years to write during which he lived through a life threatening kidney disease and came through it looking at life in a whole new light.
De fattiga i Lodz / The Destitutes of Lodz, 2009
Härifrån till allmänningen / From Here to the Great Commons, 2005
Ravensbrück / Ravensbrück, 2003
Allt förgängligt är bara en bild / Only the Image Remains, 1999
Theres / Theres, 1996