“Before long, the door is opened and I see a man come out. I can’t see his face, just the red windbreaker with the hood over the head. Even though I tell myself that it can’t be him, that it doesn’t have to be him just because the windbreaker is the same, it feels as if someone has suddenly knocked me hard in the stomach. I can no longer breathe.”

Eight stories that creep under your skin. With impressive sharpness and intensity, Janne Teller compels us to wonder and reflect about adaptation and identity, anger and violence, integration and exclusion, abuse and exploitation, (multi-)cultural differences and similarities, moral parenting, murder and the death penalty, freedoms and their limits, and not being like everyone else. About dreams and failures. In short: about what happens when we don’t feel we belong.


“Here is no moralizing, no headteacher lecturing, no overwrought good and evil. Janne Teller simply seeks to look directly into the soul of her heroes, even where it hurts. And exactly this makes these heroes, this book, so humane.” – Der Spiegel, Germany

“Janne Teller writes quietly about the vandalism of a garden, about people being beaten, people being stabbed to death. She does not condemn the perpetrators, but she does not protect them either. In a clear, sober, and never sentimental prose she writes about lonely children with a growing rage. Her subdued style makes these short stories so inexhaustible.” – Deutschlandfunk, Germany

“Janne Teller is a writer who in her very own way says the unsayable, so that the kicks, knives and stones of her characters end up deep under the skin of the reader. She shocks us, as she courageously and in an utterly compressed language paints up major dramas, where the human and emotional catastrophes come interspersed with a hesitation, that jolts the eerie disquiet straight into the reader.” – Stuttgarter Zeitung, Germany

Shortlisted for the German Young Adult Book Prize.     

Published in, ia:  Danish, German, Swedish, Hungarian, and Spanish (Spain and Latin America)