I saw something in the air then, something no one else could see. Something huge, white and shimmering, just hanging there, like aurora borealis.
I felt the light touch of hands on my shoulders, on my forehead.
Someone told me that I was finally free.
ABout the book
Janne and Anna are twins. They are both new members of a Christian congregation where people speak in tongues and wait for the big revival – and the rapture. Janne, an ambitious dancer, struggles with all the rules and restrictions. Longing for for bodily and spiritual freedom, she decides to take the leap and leave the church. But Anna remains, and Janne is betrayed by the one person she thought she could trust.
PRIZES AND NOMINATIONS
Excerpt from the jury’s statement:
«The book can be read as an artist’s novel; the title has both a religious and artistic meaning. The Leap is a novel with considerable artistic ambitions, and Sævareid fulfills them convincingly.»
«Fundamentalism. Power. Manipulation. Love. Dance. Coming-of-age.»
«Sævareid has an almost endless capacity for nuance, but she never sacrifices the emotional force of the story. [...] My favourite of the Brage nominees..»
«A well-balanced portrayal of a vulnerable young person in a Christian cult with a wide array of control mechanisms.»
«Sævareid’s story about not quite fitting in anywhere, is realistic and close to life. The reader can’t help but engage emotionally.
Kjersti R. Salomonsen, Vårt Land
«– I am describing a community with very traditional gender roles. The man is supposed to be the head of the family, sex before marriage is taboo, and the people who have sex anyway, have to hide it. A lot of people feel a sense of shame about their own sexuality. Women are implicitly or explicitly encouraged to cover up and not wear anything revealing, in order not to “tempt” the men, explains Heidi.»
«The novel is partly inspired by Sævareid’s own experiences. She went to a Pentecostal church as a young teenager.
— They believed in conspiracy theories that must seem very strange for outsiders. I remember that people worried about brushing their teeth with Colgate, since the brand was supposedly owned by satanists. The music I liked was seen as illicit and a temptation from Satan. I ended up feeling inadequate no matter what I did.»