Tommy Wieringa / Tommy Wieringa – A Beautiful Young Wife

Tommy Wieringa – A Beautiful Young Wife

Tommy Wieringa – A Beautiful Young Wife

Rights sold

  • Scribe (UK, ANZ)
  • Actes Sud (France)
  • Iperborea (Italy)
  • Hanser (Germany)
  • Libri (Hungary)
  • Edhasa (Argentina)
  • Tiderne Skifter (Denmark)
  • People’s Press (China)
  • Solbitkil (South-Korea)
  • Booka (Serbia)


Read our sample translation of A Beautiful Young Wife 


About the book

Edward Landauer, a brilliant microbiologist in his forties, meets a beautiful young woman. She is the love of his life and when the two marry in France, Edward is the happiest man in the world. Ruth Walta appears to represent a victory over time, but even she cannot stop him growing older. And before long, their marriage descends into a clash between her idealism and his realism. Edward’s research relies on animal testing, whereas Ruth is troubled by the animals’ fear and confusion.It takes the couple a long time to conceive and it is not until they have started going through the motions that Ruth finally falls pregnant. After the birth of his son, the ‘happiness, delicate like filigree’ turns to despair, as the baby won’t stop crying. The sleepless nights cause an even greater rift between Edward and Ruth. Ruth distances herself and banishes him from her bed, while Edward no longer recognizes the woman he fell in love with. Constantly aware of his decline, Edward tries to find a new balance in the arms of another young woman. Slowly but surely life as he knew it slips through his fingers, and he learns the meaning of real pain, true suffering.

The evocations of sex, bodies, appetites and desires are reminiscent of Updike at his very best… If one of the purposes of fiction is to show us ourselves, Wieringa’s mirror is polished to perfection. – The Guardian

A magician at work. ***** – De Morgen

With his lyrical, sober dialogue and restrained ambience, all created with well-chosen, evocative words, the author carefully doses out the drama, and the cruelty always comes as an unexpected blow. **** – Corriere Della Sera


Tommy Wieringa (b. 1967) is the author of books including Joe Speedboat (F. Bordewijk Prize), Caesarion (shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award), These Are the Names (Gouden Boekenuil Readers’ Prize and Libris Literature Prize) and The Death of Murat Idrissi. Translations of his books have been published in more than twenty countries.

© Gary Doak

Additional book information

  • Novel
  • ISBN 9789059652347
  • Number of pages: 96
  • World rights: De Bezige Bij
  • Price: € 5,99
  • English sample available