Nordic Literary Salon online: Fishing for the Little Pike

In the Nordic Literary Salon online in May, we will visit Lapland, the northernmost part of European land, where myths are still alive. Ema C. Stašová, translator from Finnish to Czech, will introduce a humorous magical realism novel by Juhani Karila called Fishing for the Little Pike. Moderated by Michal Švec.

You can watch the live stream on Thursday 9 May 2024 at 20.00 on the Scandinavian House Facebook page. The recording will later be made available on our YouTube channel.

Fishing for the Little Pike is a linguistically polished novel with many layers. It hides a detective plot line, spiced with biting humour, magical realism and Finnish-Laponian mythology, but also a romantic drama and ruthless critic of contemporary lifestyle that has a negative effect on the environment. Every year, Elina Ylijaak returns to the East of Lapland. She has three days to catch a small pike. But the pond is guarded by a treacherous water phantom and soon, other creatures of the old days appear and make Elina’s fishining trip a fight for her life. If that wasn’t enough, she also has to figure out a complicated relationship with a local artist. Strange unknown creatures resembling machines come out of the swamp in the tundra, an urchin breaks into the kitchen and eats yesterday’s soup and a hundreds of years old demon finds a new home in the body of the mayor.

Juhani Karila (born 1985) comes from a municipality in Lapland called Pelkosenniemi. He graduated from theory of communication at University of Tampere and is a journalist now. He received several Finnish literary prizes for his first novel Fishing for the Little Pike (2019) and has also received great success abroad.

Ema C. Stašová graduated from Finnish language and comparative studies at the Faculty of Arts UK in Prague. She teaches Finnish online and occasionally creates subtitles for movies and translates fiction. She translated for example the works of Leena Krohn, Antti Tuomainen, Max Seeck, Tuomas Kyrö or Henriikka Rönkkönen. She enjoys translating prose with elements of humor. She’s active at the Scandinavian House where she takes part in the promotion and organization of events. In her free time, she enjoys going to the theatre and to rock concerts of not only Finnish bands, watches Nordic movies, bakes laskiaispulla and travels to cold lands.

The partners of the Nordic Literary Salon online are the Czech Translators of the North – an association that brings together translators of fiction from Northern languages to Czech.

The event is part of the Scandinavian House’s year-long project Nordic Literature in the Heart of Europe 2024, which is supported by the City of Prague and the Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic.