The Man Who Died

A successful entrepreneur in the mushroom industry, Jaakko Kaunismaa is a man in his prime. At just thirty-seven years of age,he is shocked when his doctor tells him that he’s dying. What’s more, the cause is discovered to be prolonged exposure to toxins; in other words, someone has slowly but surely been poisoning him. Determined to nd out who wants him dead, Jaakko embarks on a suspenseful rollercoaster journey full of unusual characters, bizarre situations and unexpected twists.

With a nod to Fargo and the best elements of the Scandinavian noir tradition, The Man Who Died is a page-turning thriller brimming with the blackest comedy surrounding life and death, and love and betrayal, marking a stunning new departure for the King of Helsinki Noir.

“Dark and thrilling, funny and intelligent, this Fargo-like novel contains lethal doses of humor – and mushrooms.” – Sofi Oksanen, author of Purge

‘Hugely entertaining and satisfying … like Carl Hiaasen transported to Finland, it’s full of black comedy and has an unlikely hero in Jaakko, who you’ll root for to the very end’ – Kevin Wignall, author of A Death in Sweden

‘Combines a startlingly clever opening, a neat line in dark humour and a unique Scandinavian sensibility. A fresh and witty read’ – Chris Ewan, author of Safe House





“[A] rollercoaster read in which the farce – there are some wonderful car chase sequences, as well as deadly slapstick involving samurai swords, saunas, lost clothes and corpse disposal – has some serious and surprisingly philosophical underpinnings. /…/ extraordinarily poignant.” – The Guardian (UK)

“The deadpan ice sensibility of Nordic noir is combined here with warm-blooded, often surreal, humour. Like the death cap mushroom, Tuomainen’s dark story manages to be as delicious as it is toxic.” – Sunday Express (UK)

“Finnish author Tuomainen has come up with an irresistible crime comedy caper /…/ More than just a whodunit, but a gripping tale of self-loathing, investigation and desperate floundering /…/ Both a thriller and a dark laugh a minute journey that will keep you hanging on to the end. The story of a man investigating his own death has been done before but not with such gusto. ” – Crime Time (UK)

“[A] delightful mad caper of a story, which will make readers snort out loud with laughter and would have made an excellent 1930s screwball comedy directed by Frank Capra. Yet there is a serious undercurrent too of ambition, betrayal and choosing your priorities in this all too brief life. In this respect, it is more reminiscent of the grim humour of early Coen Brothers films. /…/ Congratulations to the author for embarking on such a departure from the usual Scandinavian crime fiction style, and hooray for publishers who encourage this. It is exciting to follow a favourite author into entirely new territory, while losing none of his crisp, clear prose. ” – Crime Fiction Lover (UK)

“Comparisons have been made with Carl Hiaasen and the Coen Brothers, but Tuomainen is his own man; liberally salted with macabre, improbable incidents of violence, The Man Who Died is deftly plotted, poignant and perceptive in its wry reflections on mortality and very funny.” – Irish Times (Ireland)

”In the field of Finnish crime fiction, Antti Tuomainen is the phenomenal star of the 21st century. One novel after another, he constructs a set-up so intense that the building of suspense is infallible. This is also true with the new The Man Who Died. .. Tuomainen embeds the culinary ideas into the thematic structure. He tickles the sensitive spot in the imagination where the innocent picking of mushrooms is about to mutate into mushroom phobia. … A small town in July, the patio extravaganzas and the comically clumsy criminals are skillfully and knowingly built contrast to noir expectations.” – Aamulehti (Finland)

“The set-up is murderous, and the reader is immediately hooked. … Tuomainen is breaking new ground. The Man Who Died contains numerous excellent insights into the thin line between life and death, and Finnishness also gets its share. Many laughs are due to the humorous stance of the narrator.” – Helsingin Sanomat (Finland)

”Antti Tuomainen’s new novel The Man Who Died skips the foreplay and gets down to business in a way that hooks you immediately. … The Man Who Died is very well written. Tuomainen’s strength, in addition to the story, is a strong sentence with well-thought content.” – Turun Sanomat (Finland)

”Antti Tuomainen surprises by writing a truly funny crime novel. More intriguing than finding the murderer is to follow the main character: the man awaiting his own death as the result of poisoning, his self-reflection and his preparing for the inevitable. The humor rises from the insane situations in which the man who searches for his own killer finds himself.” – Gloria (Finland)

”Tuomainen locates this breathless adventure in sweltering Hamina and the story includes mushrooms, a samurai sword, secrets and the inavoidably impending death of the main character. You can’t let go of this book!” – Kodin Kuvalehti (Finland)

”.. Yet another brilliant and original crime novel by Antti Tuomainen. .. In his six novels Antti Tuomainen has created his very own unique style wherein the suspense rises to the top without a single ordinary crime novel cliché. In fact, his novels aren’t even actual detective novels because they don’t have regular criminals and regular policemen. They are more about human beings driven into complicated situations that create more tension than what pushed-and-forced thrillers offer. .. A first-rate performance. A manifestation of Tuomainen’s skills and the ability to transform.” – Kansan Uutiset (Finland)