Marisha Rasi-Koskinen (b. 1975) works as a psychologist and takes photographs as a hobby. In addition to psychology she has also studied social psychology, philosophy, and women’s studies. During her student years she did volunteer work in crisis centres and hospices in the Czech Republic.
She won first prize in the 2010 Pirkanmaa Writing Competition and in 2011 came third in the short story competition organized each year by Gummerus and Nuoren Voiman Liitto. She is the mother of three children. Katariina is her debut novel.
Katariina, a debut novel by a talented writer, has clearly got what it takes to become a success.
– Terhi Hannula, Turun Sanomat
Katariina is debut novel which possesses both artistic value and readability. It is at once easy and difficult, because it reads itself as the mystery of Katariina goes on growing, challenging the reader to do some brainwork in a kind of a puzzle play.
– Katja, Lumiomena literary blog
Marisha Rasi-Koskinen has written a powerful first novel. (…) The atmosphere of the book is reminiscent of the fantasy films of Guillermo del Toro.
– Anuirmeli Sallamo-Lavi
It isn’t easy to reach the world of the child, but Rasi-Koskinen succeeds very well. The book deals with tough and important themes.
Exciting, surprising, moving.
– Hanna, Kirjainten virrassa literary blog
Marisha Rasi-Koskinen’s novel Katariina has the kind of narrative flow that is familiar from detective fiction, but it is first and foremost a literary novel. The book is a many-faceted puzzle towards whose solution the reader eagerly turns the pages.
The father of Katariina and her younger sister Margareetta is a building contractor, Nieminen, who builds dream houses. Since the houses must be tried out before they are sold, the family lives in uncompleted homes for a couple of years or so at a time, but never less, for tax purposes. The time always comes when the house must be sold and they move to the next one. The girls’ mother is a child welfare worker and lives for weeks away from the family, rescuing other people’s children. Never her own.
The novel plays hide and seek in the borders between reality and the imaginary. Its focus is a period eleven years earlier, when Katariina disappeared just before her graduation party. Who was Katariina really? Each of the people who are close to her take turns in trying to solve the enigma – her sister, her mother, a pair of runaway children, her boyfriend, in whose lives Katariina is at once present and absent. The different parts of the novel are connected by Katariina’s letters, which guide the novel’s characters and the reader, leading them forward.
The seemingly innocent games are combined with something sinister and mysterious. The stories told by those close to Katariina flow forward raising painful questions about abandonment, responsibility, family and friendship.
Original name: Katariina
Publisher: Avain, 2011
Hardcover 135 x 200 mm
Cover design: Satu Ketola