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One of Finland’s most dynamic novelists bursts onto the American literary scene with this erotic story of an ambitious therapist’s sessions with an unforgettable patient.
Award-winning author Laura Lindstedt makes her Anais Nin–like US debut with this mesmerizing tale of one woman’s potent affliction: Natalia cannot stop thinking about sex. Narrated by her unnamed, ungendered therapist, who leaps at the chance to employ their most experimental methods, My Friend Natalia offers a gripping examination of the power dynamics always present but rarely ever spoken about in therapy. “Something flared within me,” the therapist notes. “And it wasn’t exclusively sympathy... It was more like a sudden experience of harmony, wholly inappropriate given the circumstances."
By combining philosophy and literature, repressed childhood memories and explicitly unrepressed erotic experiences, their sessions quickly shed all inhibitions. As tension percolates, the therapist can’t shake the question: What does Natalia really want? In prose charged with sharp banter and double entendres, My Friend Natalia takes a deconstructive approach to the self-help narratives of our times and announces Laura Lindstedt as a rare and unflinching literary talent.
About the Author: Laura Lindstedt is the author of Oneiron, winner of the Finlandia Prize - the country's highest literary honor. Her works have been sold in eighteen countries. She lives in Helsinki, where she is revising her PhD thesis.
David Hackston is a British translator of Finnish and Swedish literature and drama. His translation of Pajtim Statovci's Crossing was a finalist for the National Book Award.