Secret Passages in a Hillside Town

Pasi Ilmari Jaaskelainen (Author) Lola Rogers (Translator)


An atmospheric love story with a twist by the author of The Rabbit Back Literature Society.

In a small hillside town, Olli Suominen - publisher and discontented husband - is constantly losing umbrellas. He has also joined a film club. And Greta, an old flame, has added him on Facebook.

As his life becomes more and more entangled with Greta's, and his wife and son are dragged into the aftermath of this teenage romance, Olli is forced to make a horrible choice. But does he really want to know what the secret passages are? Can he be sure that Greta is who she seems to be? And what actually happened on that summer's day long ago?

Tense, atmospheric and often very funny, Secret Passages in a Hillside Town is another magical Finnish story from the author of the acclaimed The Rabbit Back Literature Society.

Product Details

Pushkin Press
Publish Date
September 18, 2018
5.1 X 1.1 X 7.7 inches | 0.75 pounds
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About the Author

Pasi Ilmari J&aauml;&aauml;skel&aauml;inen, born in 1966, is one of Finland's best-kept secrets. A novelist and short-story writer, he is well known for his fantasy and sci-fi narratives and has twice won the Kuvastaja Fantasy Prize given by Finland's Tolkien Society and four times won the Atorox Award for Fantasy. He teaches Finnish language and literature and is the father of three sons.


"Finnish novelist Jääskeläinen deftly channels the tropes of the big screen - from saturated colors and chiaroscuro to stolen lines and melodramatic scenes, he stages the glittering affair doomed by the secrets of that fateful summer, the mystery of Karri's disappearance, and the truth about what happened in the secret tunnels. A beguiling, unexpected blend of whimsical romance and suspenseful noir." -- Kirkus Reviews

"This mysterious, idiosyncratic tale exerts an unexpected pull... more than a little cinematic." - Mail on Sunday

"Reality, fantasy worlds, and references to the Famous Five blend into one intoxicating vision... Beautiful, absorbing, and chilling literature." - Helsingin Sanomat

"The kind of novel that surprises you with its strangeness long after you think that every possible imaginative alley has been explored." - Kannesta kanteen

"Delightful, magical, inventive." -- The National (UAE)

'Gloriously strange, witty and disturbing... A tremendous, haunting book, full of bitter pain and starry-eyed wonder.' - SFX (5 star 'SFX Loves' lead review for December)

"Randomly funny, ultimately quite dark, very very clever Secret Passages in a Hillside Town is a literary delight, a hidden gem and comes highly recommended from me." - Liz Loves Books (blog)

"Strange and beguiling, luring its readers in with quirkiness and charm... highly compelling." - Glasgow Herald

"I really like this book... Another gem from Pushkin Press, this could be a Man Booker..." -- Winston's Dad (blog)

'Praise for The Rabbit Back Literature Society: 'Unexpected, thrilling and absurd' Sunday Telegraph; 'Unnerving, enigmatic' FT; 'Witty' Observer; 'You'll love it' Harper's Bazaar; 'Thrilling' Shortlist