By Jessica Schiefauer

The Carriers depicts a world that has been subjected to a pandemic for decades. A contagious disease that forces men and women to live separated. The women are in control of power, and the scarce resources are shared equally among the inhabitants. But the system is starting to get questioned.

Nikki and Simone live an uncomplicated life together. Then one day Simone becomes obsessed with the idea of carrying a child. Her stubbornness leads them both down a difficult and dangerous path. More is at stake than Nikki could have imagined, and she becomes aware of things—about Simone, herself, and the community they live in—that turn the whole world upside down.

Two-time August nominee Jessica Schiefauer has written a dense and shimmering novel about love, parenthood and living conditions in a society both similar and different to our own. This novel was a contemporary depiction of society even before the pandemic of covid-19. It is about how a world much like ours copes after a horrific pandemic, where its inhabitants have found a “new normal” – adapted to it and adjusted immensely. It is about the aftermath; about how different approaches to how to protect the people have had consequences for international relations. It is about what happens to those not included in the solidarity of the group, left on the outside to fend for themselves. The Carriers is a breathtaking read.

First published by Romanus & Selling, 2020

Bulgaria, Aviana
Hungary, Polar Egyesület
Italy, Fandango Libri
Sweden, Romanus & Selling

“The Carriers intriguingly depicts what happens when all societal order is reversed, and how it affects both the community as well as the individual. The Carriers is one of the strongest novels of the year.”
– Ica Kuriren

“The novel brings on a creeping sense of unease and bad omen when small changes is values has an enormous effect on the society and on people’s lives. An interesting thought-experiment, skillfully told.”
– Nya Wermlandstidningen

“When does good intentions turn into bad actions? Who owns the right of life? The future world is depicted with precisely the right mixture of detail and vagueness to allow the reader their own interpretations.”
– Borås tidning

“August prize-winning Jessica Schiefauer’s first adult fiction novel is a feministic science fiction, albeit highly relatable. The story slowly evolves into an emotional thriller and Schiefauer is a master at depicting feelings in very few words. The Carriers contains both touching human fates and questions about moral and oppression. It is frighteningly accurate and an extremely good read.”
– Aftonbladet

“Jessica Schiefauer’s The Carriers is an absolutely wonderful delight of feminist science fiction. It has everything you want from the genre: engaging life stories, a credible world that is only a few distinct notches from the one we already inhabit, a suspenseful plot and, to top it all off, a deeply thoughtful moral discussion about acceptable principles on which to build a society.[…] Above all, Nikki emerges as a genuine human being, not just a ‘carrier’ of a lot of important issues. Instead, we get to know her from the inside, her body and emotions at odds with the social ideals, in an insightful and compassionate portrayal. In addition, she leaves the reader with moral questions without clear answers, gender conflicts without obvious solutions. A utopian calamity that will not necessarily lead to its opposite.”
– Svenska Dagbladet

“There are utopian streaks in The Carriers, streaks that causes the treaty that opens the book to trigger a dizzy sensation, even a relieving and revolutionary feeling. The treaty is signed by all the nations in the world and flips the patriarchy over. It solves the crisis that a pandemic has brought on by giving the power to the women – and by abolishing all men. The opening pages of the novel thereby sets an alluring chord that Scheifauer skillfully manages, both in her depictions of the women’s close relationships, and in the sense of release and freedom in the absence of threatening male violence. The instinctive feeling is also in the details, such as the holiness of the trees, the fact that no-one eats animals, and that geographical places are named Irisburg, Dorishamn, Katarina Woods and Angela’s Avenue. It reminds us that both words and actions has meaning. It beats and breaks habitual visions. It challenges, complicates and suggests the possibility of an alternative existence. And then everything changes. Stealthy and lurkingly, the utopia becomes a dystopia. The fear of all things male turns out not to be a thing of the past, but rather the logic that keeps the new society together. The text is increasingly urgent in reminding us that fear can maintain both stereotypes and separatism. […]To write a novel based on linguistic oppositions with the object to challenge them is a risk. And true to her past, Schiefauer proves herself capable to avoid the traps said risk entails. She both questions and answers, longs and disenchants.”
– Göteborgs Posten 

“The Carriers is a tremendously strong and thought-provoking book, that really flips over power structures. It is mind-boggling, and had me completely hooked.”
– David Lagercrantz

“When I first read The Carriers I thought of it as an imaginative depiction of the future, but recent developments has made it horribly relevant. In the hands of an author like Jessica Schiefauer, the tale of post-pandemic life turns in to a masterpiece. The Carriers is thought-provoking, provocative, playful, touching and incredibly thrilling – a baffling read! I am immensely proud and happy to be the publisher of this book, and all I’ve really got to say is: read it!”
– Susanna Romanus, Founder and Publisher

”The Carriers burrows its way into big issues like ecology, parenthood and the allocation of the worlds’ power and resources. All of this is done by a light hand in a suspenseful and absorbing story. A rich book, a world of its own, and a language that glistens and burns.”
– Jesper Ims, Editor 

”The Carriers is nothing less than a magnificent read. Nikki’s and Simone’s touching faiths and Jessica Schiefauer’s crystal clear prose makes The Carriers a book that is impossible to put down. With great attention to detail and nuances, Schiefauer constructed an entire universe. I can only dream of what she will do next and rejoice at the fact that she is published with us at Romanus & Selling.”
– Åsa Selling, Founder and Executive Editor