Tiina Laanem

Novels Tiina Laanem


Tiina Laanem (real name Tiina Laanem-Murde; born 10 September 1974) is a prose writer.

Laanem acquired secondary education in Tallinn, studied accountancy at Lääne-Viru College and public administration at Tallinn University of Technology. She has worked at the Estonian Maritime Administration, as a reporter and editor in the press and at Pegasus Publishing House. Laanem is a member of the Estonian Union of Directors and Dramaturges, the Estonian Writers’ Union (from 2020) and the Estonian PEN-Club.

Her debut novel Väikesed vanamehed (‘Little Old Men’, 2007), written in an entertaining journalistic style, won the Estonian novel competition in 2006. Concentrating on male characters who have reached the middle age, it weighs human relations against the background of the present-day welfare society. The book, which can be defined as a summer vacation novel, was staged by the Ugala Theatre in 2010 as a summer production. The action of the novel Sidrunid ja siilid (‘Lemons and Hedgehogs’, 2009) also takes place at present, but the portraits of characters deserve more attention here than the setting. The novel Pildilt kukkujad (‘Falling from the Picture’, 2016), which won the A. H. Tammsaare literary award, is deeper and more panoramic in time. By describing choices and failures in life, it deals with the story of a family throughout 20th-century events, starting from the 1930s and reaching the present. The eponymous play premiered at the Vanemuine Theatre in 2015. Ties between generations also occupy an essential place in the play Nähtamatu maja (‘Invisible House’) which premiered at the Endla Theatre in 2012. The play won a special mention at the playwriting competition of the Estonian Theatre Agency in 2011.

For children, Laanem has written the books Mina, Meg ja meie klass (‘I, Meg and Our Class’, 2019) and Kollase kassi komando (‘Yellow Cat’s Command’, 2020). The action of both takes place at the present time, being centred on primary-school children.

A. K. (Translated by I. A.)

Books in Estonian

Väikesed vanamehed. Tallinn: Eesti Päevaleht, 2007, 255 lk.
Sidrunid ja siilid. Tallinn: Eesti Päevaleht, 2009, 215 lk.
Pildilt kukkujad. Tallinn: Sidrunid ja Siilid, 2016, 270 lk.

Short prose
Õnnelik jää: novellid ja lühijutud. Tallinn: Pegasus, 2012, 154 lk.

Öised hääled. Jutukogu. Tallinn: Pegasus, 2021, 176 lk.

Mina, Meg ja meie klass. Tallinn: Pegasus, 2019, 133 lk.
Kollase Kassi komando. Tallinn: Pegasus, 2020, 164 lk.

Kihnu Virve: nagu linnukene oksal. Tallinn: Pegasus, 2009, 223 lk. [2. trükk: 2017.]