2009 After you, Max
 
Orig. title: Sinun jälkeesi, Max

Max and Isaac, are Siamese twins who were born in Germany in 1899. The twin boys, joined at the hip, are given to their mother’s sister to bring up, and the aunt decides, under pressure from a gentleman friend, to sell the twins to a circus so that they can become artists. Theirs was a cruel fate, but in those days, also a little enviable. In the circus, Max and Isaac meet other grotesque misfits of nature and realise that they are respected artists that people are happy to pay and see.

The colourful story takes the brothers from the circus via a Parisian cabaret and the backgrooms of bordellos towards North, and Helsinki, where they meet a charming but totally immoral Iris. Iris is a woman that men worship and women hate. Iris, kept by her husbad, is a divine creature who does not shy away from using men whilst seeking her own fortune. The teller of the story, Isaac, falls madly in love with Iris.

Leena Parkkinen's maiden novel, After you, Max, dives into the middle of the bubbling 1920's Europe. The book, praised by the critics, is an unusual story of survival against all odds at the ends of the world, and the quest for love of the main characters.

With her debut novel Leena Parkkinen won the Debutant of the Year 2009 Award. The jury described the winning novel:

"The comparison to Günter Grass’ Tin Drum, published exactly 50 years ago, is justified. The setting of both debute novels is like the freak show of life and the storytelling is descriptive: the authors add a magic touch to the harsh facts, transforming them through the wisdom of someone who has experienced and seen a lot.

After you, Max takes the reader through the darker side of Europe, showing that without conflict and insanity there can be no humanity."

"After you, Max, by Leena Parkkinen is a story about being different. At times sensitive, at times bawdy and dramatic, the Finnish author skilfully describes in this tale a life beyond what is generally considered normal After you, Max is an appealing novel about the world inhabited by two outsiders who are bound by a greater solidarity than most 'normal' folk." Interkultura Online, Germany

Publishers:
Finland, Teos
Denmark, Turbine
Germany, Osburg
Spain (Spanish world wide), Lengua de Trapo
Poland, Świat Książki
Czech Republic, Argo
Lithuania, LRS Leidykla