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Cover for To Mervas

To Mervas

Elisabeth Rynell, Victoria Haggblom (Translated by)


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To Mervas is a turbulent journey through the wilderness of memory, domestic violence, and the vast gulf between lost lovers. After years of insulating herself from humanity in the wake of her disabled son’s death, Marta is jolted out of exile when a cryptic note arrives from Mervas, a ghost town deep in Sweden’s desolate northern wilds. The letter is from Kosti, her once-great love, shattering a silence of more than twenty years. When spring comes she sets off alone for Mervas, without any notion of who or what might await her there. Physical and emotional abuse, longing and loss, and the nature of love and redemption are explored with remarkable empathy and a visceral lyricism in Elizabeth Rynell’s stirring novel.

Praise For To Mervas

A wrenching tale by Swedish novelist and poet Rynell traces a woman’s personal journey through shame and violence . . . Rynell proves a fearless writer in this emotionally relentless work and finds a lyrical grace in Marta’s self-awareness. —Publishers Weekly

Not a single false note rings in this sonata in minor. —Swedish Daily News

Elisabeth Rynell’s language can only be described as breathtakingly beautiful. —Uppsala Daily News

Rynell is one of Sweden’s most intense and intensely appreciated storytellers in prose and verse. She never wastes words. —Rika Lesser

Archipelago, 9780981987378, 192pp.

Publication Date: May 28, 2010

About the Author

Elisabeth Rynell, born in Stockholm, is a poet and a novelist. Her works include the poetry volumes Night Conversations, Sorrow Winged Songs, Desert Wanderer, and the novels A Tale of Loka and Hohaj. To Mervas was a finalist for the August Strindberg Prize and is her first novel to appear in English.

Victoria Häggblom is a writer and a translator. She lives in Berkeley, California.