Lassi, a 13 years old boy, who lives in a Nordic town, comes to spend his summer holiday to the ranch owned by his relative family who are very religious people.
Now Lassi, for the first time since their childhood, meets his cousins Sonya and Leo, who have grown up and seem to live in another inner reality than their parents. The sister and brother live under deep discipline of morning and evening prays of the religious home but behind that daily routine they own something more intimate and fateful.

During hot summer weeks, Sonya, a modern ‘scarlet o’hara’ as the leader, the trio opens a black door to unknown and forbidden to where even the moon light does not shine: without feeling any guilty of being relatives to each other, they start to make love (Sonya treating the boys as her objects) everywhere in the farmhouse and in the forests by the river under adults’ blind eyes.

Doing this, the youth share a curious understanding that ‘this all’ happens under God’s holy protection just because they are relatives. If they were not relatives, as Sonya puts it to words, they would never had met and could not be so naturals as they are now in this magic of sexuality and its beauty. So God himself is helping us, Sonya says. The holy innocence shelters them three during their magic weeks – though Leo instincts that something is deeply wrong. But Sonya and Lassi, who has fallen in love with her, go deeper and deeper in their physical obsession keeping Leo as his sister’s other love.

The novel’s story happens in a Nordic countryside, near Lapland in Finland, during some summer weeks in early 1960’s – in a farmhouse by a plain river where a special religious people live with their own traditions and habits (the ‘Amish people’ of Finland).


This book got the National Literature Award in Finland in 1992 and it has just been published in France (Phèbus)

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