The River in Me

Swedish title: Älven i mig

Category: General Non-Fiction / Narrative & General Non-Fiction

Pub date: 05-05-2023

The River in Me

Jannete Hentati

An essayistic memoir of one woman’s urgent search for her own roots, following the Lule River and unveiling its controversial history.

A free-spirited social anthropologist can no longer ignore the aching inside. She longs for a place to call home, to belong to something. Growing up, her family has always moved around from place to place and her rootlessness is getting to her. Determined to find the answers she’s looking for, she decides to go back in time.

Her grandfather was employed by Vattenfall AB, the state-owned energy company responsible for turning natural resources into hydroelectric power and expanding the Swedish power grid across the country. He was offered housing next to the Lule River with the assignment to build power stations, but when the work was done, they moved on to the next location. The small villages where they had been living for the past few years was torn down and today there are no traces of there even having been a community there.

Without any landmarks, Jannete Hentati decides to redirect the focus of her quest: while there is no place on land where she feels at home, perhaps the river is her source, where she belongs? She decides to conquer the river, move alongside it for 460 kilometres, from Ahkkajaure in Lapland until it meets the Gulf of Bothnia down in Luleå.

During her search she stumbles upon the untold story of Swedish colonial history, a narrative right at the centre of a growing energy crisis.

An intelligent and evocative memoir, THE RIVER IN ME explores the complex relationship between identity and place. Hentati writes with poetic resonance, as she invites the reader to her exploration of exile and belonging, and her journey to find a place to call home.

Johanna Lindborg
Johanna Lindborg

Senior Literary Agent | Fiction & Narrative Non-Fiction, Film & TV

+46 737 12 92 02

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