By Marie Hermanson

Everything has worked out perfectly for Fredrik. He has a stable, interesting job with the local authorities and, to his surprise, he has managed to marry a woman like Paula – a woman for whom his admiration knows no bounds. She is a very successful artist and together they have two beautiful children. To top things off, they have recently moved into a house which is all they have ever dreamt of; an old house, large and newly renovated, with a beautiful veranda and a balcony facing the fields and the woods. They are a very happy family indeed.

But the idyllic picture begins to disintegrate. One early morning when Fredrik goes downstairs, someone is there: A man, quite short, with dark hair, narrow eyes and a broad mouth. He keeps repeating that he lives in the cupboard underneath the stairs. What is going on in this beautiful home? What is happening to Fredrik? And what makes his wife pull away from him?

Mannen under trappan (The Man Under the Stairs) has sold 56,000 copies in hardcover and 27,000 in paperback and won the Best Fiction Title 2005 Award by the Swedish booksellers and was also selected as the Swedish Book of The Month in October 2005. It is currently being adapted for the screen by SVT.

First published by Albert Bonniers Förlag, Sweden, 2005
287 pages

Best Fiction Title 2005 by Swedish Booksellers
Swedish Book of the Month October 2005

The Czech Republic, Metafora
Denmark, Politikens Förlag
Iceland, Ari Útgáfa
Germany, Suhrkamp
The Netherlands, De Geus
Norway, Schibsted
Russia, Centrpolygraph
Sweden, Bonnier Audio (audiobook)
Sweden, Albert Bonniers förlag
Sweden, Elib AB

Sweden, SVT

The man under the Stairs is an adult tale that is at once disquieting and intrusive; an everyday, hammock-read thriller.

Marie Hermanson brings a number of issues to life in her intelligently and fluidly narrated, modern-day saga. It’s mystical and symbol-studded – it’s excellent.