zondag 7 augustus 2016


This month a new youth book of mine came out in German. Publishing house Carlsen Verlag issued KREBSMEISTERSCHAFT FÜR ANFÄNGER, the German thranslation (by the great translator Rolf Erdorf), which is based on the true life story of Roy Looman (now 21, in the story he is fifteen years old). The original title, published by Querido in Amsterdam is HET KANKERKAMPIOENSCHAP VOOR JUNIOREN.

Roy told me his life story in over fourty sessions. He got cancer when he was 15 years old, at a time where he was mainly playing soccer with his friends, working in a supermarket, going to school, having fun, trying to kiss as many girls as he could. The impact it had on his life and on his mind is in the book - and the story is told in a very direct, strong way. It moves from heartfelt to extremely funny (Roy has a great sense of humour), from the start of the disease to the end, and even after that - and we get to know everything, including pretty private episodes. It's amazing what Roy dared to tell, but it's part of his mission: make people aware of what cancer can do to a young mind, in a negative ánd in a positive way. I'm very proud that Roy let me use his voice for this swinging, fast-paced, but yet elaborate novel. It's certainly not a sad book, and this is proven by the first line: 'This must be the sickest game I have ever played. But I can't stand losing, so let me tell you upfront: I'm not going to die.'
This book is promoted by the Dutch Literary Fund, so foreign publishers could apply for translation and production grants here.