The Boy eBook

The Boy
Wytske Versteeg


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A gripping Psychological thriller about parenthood and loss, bullying and revenge!
Kito is the only child of his adoptive parents. Chubby and dark-skinned, he is ruthlessly bullied at school, but at home he says nothing of what he is going through, only that he has pains in his stomach.  After a class outing to the beach, Kito goes missing. Days later his lifeless body is discovered washed up on the sand.

Determined to find the person responsible for Kito’s death, his mother follows the trail to drama teacher Hannah, who was in charge of overseeing the field trip that day. By this time Hannah has begun a new life in the Bulgarian countryside, and unsuspectingly welcomes Kito’s mother. As the snow begins to fall the two women become entangled in a claustrophobic relationship, trust between them grows and Hannah hesitantly begins to tell the story of Kito. But Kito’s mother has only one thing on her mind, revenge…

Translated from Dutch by Sarah Welling
Sarah Welling grew up in Eindhoven, in a bilingual family of teachers and translators. She has degrees in English Literature and Spanish and Latin American Studies from the Universities of Amsterdam and London. She works as a web editor and literary translator including. translator of exhibition texts for museums in Amsterdam , where she lives. She has also worked as a bookseller, language trainer and an editor. She has had work published in the English-language edition of a Dutch literary magazine, Das Mag, and is currently working on translations of a novel and an essay for another literary magazine.

Fiction | ISBN: 9781908446558 | eBook

Wytske Versteeg is a Dutch author and political scientist. In 2008 Versteeg published This is Not a Homeless Person (Dit is geen dakloze) about her experiences as a volunteer, mixing philosophical literature with journalistic observations and personal accounts of homelessness. Her debut novel De Wezenlozen (Weightless) was nominated for the Opzij Literature Prize 2013 and long-listed for the AKO Literature Prize. The Boy is Versteeg’s second novel and has been translated into German, Italian, Turkish and Danish. The Boy won the BNG Bank Literature Prize (BNG Nieuwe Literatuurprijs) in 2014 and was longlisted for the prestigious Libris Literature Prize.

10 things I'd like my readers to know about me
by Wyetke Versteeg for
Female First magazine>

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'The Boy is a beautifully written and poignant novel about adoption, motherhood, racism, adolescence, and the perils of misplaced heroics within helping relationships' - Anne Goodwin, Annecdotal.' >
‘[A] sophisticated novel about parenthood, guilt and responsibilities. [… with] a touch of the thriller about it. You’re never quite sure what the narrator will do or how far she’ll take things’
Rebecca Foster, The Nudge >
'Immediacy which is both effective and discomforting. [...] This is a deeply disturbing book, not a conventional crime novel with a cut and dried resolution, but a commentary on how we treat people different from the rest of us all wrapped up in a gripping, wrenching piece of storytelling.'
A Life in Books
'If you're looking for emotional rawness and psychological complexity, then prepare to be engrossed. [...] This is a brilliant and devastating novel with much to debate'
Lizzy Siddal
‘This is a powerful and convincing study of how the real victims of death are often the living left behind' Eileen Battersby, The Irish Times’
Battersby,  The Irish Times
‘This is a literary construct which is presented with such excitement and panache that it transforms fiction into something believable’
Arie Storm Het Parool

'A captivating study of the human psyche and an exemplary analysis of contemporary society. The novel focuses on human failure with regard to suffering inflicted because of social hierarchies.'
Frankfurter Allgemeine
The Boy deals with several themes in a fascinating and original way. […] With this book, Versteeg has written one of the most remarkable novels by young writers from Holland and Flanders , that has been translated in the last couple of years.’
Edgar Tijhuis, Versopolis >
Wytske Versteeg on Writing about Motherhood, in this guest post
The Literary Sofa
'The latest offering from Dutch author Wystke Versteeg, The Boy is a feast to add to the translated fiction list'
Buzz Magazine >
'A compelling, painful and uncompromising portrait of troubled attachment and maternal grief, this story has left a lasting impact on me.
Isabel Costello,  Sofa Spotlight
'The Boy is a dark read about death, mental illness, and societal pressures. It’s heartbreaking in it’s honest depiction of depression and the numbness that accompanies it. If you have ever suffered loss and grief, this one will resonate with you.'
Heartbreaking, free from voyeurism, and so wonderfully written that one can hardly put the book down’ 
Elle (Germany)
‘One of the most beautiful books I’ve rea d this year’
Wim Brands, Boeken (television)
‘Such an incredible writer’
Annemarie Oster, de Volkskrant

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