Kaj Korkea-aho. Kuva Pekka Holmström 2015.

Kai Erik

(real name Kaj Korkea-aho, born 1983) is one of the most talented and distinguished Finland-Swedish writers of his generation. He is also a comedian and regularly performs on radio, TV and stage. He is a popular columnist and writes plays for both theatre and radio.

Kai Erik’s enigmatic novels defy clear categorisation. His works are an original combination of the thriller and horror genres. This is gripping fiction with a strong and distinctive voice and allusions to literary heritage.

Despite subtle elements of the supernatural, the world of Kai Erik’s novels always rings true: the characters are relatable, the environments recognisable. However, underneath the familiar surface is a vague, creeping feeling that something is horribly and permanently ‘off’.

In his novels, Kai Erik deals with the themes of growing up and coming-of-age, as well as the role friends and friendship play during those crucial years. His novels highlight the might of stories, books and literature. He also explores the damage that narrow-minded religious dogma can cause within the community.

In 2014 Kai Erik was selected as one of the 20 best young Finnish novelists presented in the Granta Finland anthology.

“I want the reader to feel that my novel is a mystery box; and while reading, I want them to be obsessed with the urge to find out what’s inside that box.” – Kai Erik


Press quotes

“Kai Erik is simply a very good storyteller, who knows how to weave his story effectively and who understands the significance of location and detail. He also has a clear mastery of both characterisation and dialogue.” – Åbo Underrättelser

“Kai Erik’s novel is a psychological thriller in the style of Dostoyevsky. No less thrilling is his mastery of language.” – Ruumiin Kulttuuri on the debut novel Keep Me Safe for I Am Small

“Kai Erik will soon conquer the world, you wait and see.” – Monika Fagerholm, Finland-Swedish novelist



Keep Me Safe for I Am Small (Se till mig som liten är, 2009)

The Grass Is Darker on the Other Side (Gräset är mörkare på andra sidan, 2012)

The Evil Book (Paha kirja, 2015)


Works published in / Rights sold to:

Denmark (Art People / People’s Press)
The Netherlands (Ambo/Anthos)
Germany (Bastei Lübbe)
Italy (Sperling & Kupfer / Mondadori)
Turkey (Üçbīrīkī Publishing)
World Spanish (Plaza y Janés / Penguin Random House)


Published books