Emmi Itäranta

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Emmi Itäranta
Emmi Itäranta at Koolibri in Tallinn, in 2014
Emmi Itäranta at Koolibri in Tallinn, in 2014
Born 1976
Occupation Novelist
Language Finnish, English
Nationality Finnish
Alma mater University of Tampere
University of Kent
Genres Speculative fiction, Science fiction
Notable work Memory of Water 2014
The City of Woven Streets 2016

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Emmi Elina Itäranta (born 1976) is a Finnish novelist. Her debut novel Memory of Water was published by HarperCollins in 2014.


Itäranta holds a MA in Drama from the University of Tampere, and worked as a columnist, theatre critic, script writer and press officer after graduation.[1] In 2007 she enrolled in the postgraduate program of University of Kent, where she began writing her debut novel as a part of her Creative Writing course work.[2][3] Working simultaneously in English and her native Finnish,[4][5] Itäranta completed both manuscripts, and in 2011 the Finnish version won the Fantasy and Sci-Fi Literary Fiction contest organised by the Finnish publishing house Teos.[1][6] The novel was published by Teos in 2012 under the name Teemestarin kirja (lit. "The Tea Master's Book"). The book won the Kalevi Jäntti Award in 2012, and the Nuori Aleksis Award in 2013. It was also shortlisted for the 2013 Tähtivaeltaja Award.[7]

The English version of the book, Memory of Water, was published by HarperCollins in 2014 in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.[8] It has been nominated for the 2014 Philip K. Dick Award,[9] as well as the Golden Tentacle Award[10] and the Arthur C. Clarke Award.[11] Translation rights of the book have been sold to 21 territories to date, and it has already been published in Arabic, Czech, Danish, Estonian, French, Georgian, German, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish and Turkish.[12] The Italian version of the book, La Memoria dell'Acqua, was published by Frassinelli and was among the three final nominees for the Premio Salerno Libro d'Europa in 2016.

Emmi Itäranta's second novel was published in October 2015 in Finnish, as Kudottujen kujien kaupunki. It too was nominated for the 2016 Tähtivaeltaja Award, and was one of the novels to receive the City of Tampere Literary Award.[13] The English language version was published in 2016, under the name The City of Woven Streets in the UK, and as The Weaver in the US and Canada.[14][15]

Emmi Itäranta lives in Canterbury, United Kingdom.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Riikonen, Marika. "The words will flow as long as she can move her hands". Finnish Weird 2014. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  2. ^ Goldschlager, Amy. "Emmi Itäranta". Kirkus. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  3. ^ Walton-Lange, Lucy. "Exclusive interview with Emmi Itäranta". Female First. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  4. ^ Roberts, Adam. "Best science fiction books of 2014". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 February 2015. 
  5. ^ Buxton, Charlotta. "How to write a novel in two languages – a writing interview with Emmi Itäranta". Londonlotta. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  6. ^ Brusso, Charlene. "Women Reach for the Stars: Science Fiction & Fantasy". Publisher's Weekly. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  7. ^ Stenger, Wif. "Finnish dystopian debut stirs literary interest in US". YLE News. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  8. ^ Farrington, Joshua. "HarperVoyager signs Finnish debut". The Bookseller. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  9. ^ "2014 Philip K. Dick Award Nominees Announced". Philip K. Dick Award. Retrieved 20 January 2015. 
  10. ^ "2014 Golden Tentacle Finalists". The Kitschies. Archived from the original on 1 March 2014. Retrieved 16 February 2015. 
  11. ^ "29th Arthur C. Clarke Award Shortlist Announced". The Arthur C. Clarke Awards. Serendip. Retrieved 6 May 2015. 
  12. ^ "Russian rights to Emmi Itäranta's Memory of Water sold to Text Publishers". Elina Ahlback Literary Agency. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  13. ^ Rajamäki, Aila. "Tampereen kaupunki palkitsi kulttuurin, taiteen ja tieteen tekijöitä". City of Tampere. City of Tampere. Retrieved 26 May 2016. 
  14. ^ "Harper Collins – The City of Woven Streets by Emmi Itäranta". HarperCollinsPublishers. Retrieved 23 January 2016. 
  15. ^ "HarperCollinsCanada – The Weaver by Emmi Itäranta". HarperCollinsCanada. Retrieved 23 January 2016. 

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