Marente de Moor (b. 1972) studied Slavonic Languages and spent much of the 1990s living in Russia, where she worked for both Russian and Dutch media. Her columns about the absurdities of everyday life in Russia were collected and published as Petersburgse vertellingen (Petersburg Stories) in 1999. On returning to the Netherlands she worked for several years at the weekly HP/De Tijd.
De Moor made her literary debut in 2007. De overtreder (The Transgressor). met with widespread critical acclaim and was published in Germany by Suhrkamp Verlag as Amsterdam und zurück. Three years later, De Nederlandse maagd – her first foray into the historical novel – went on to win the prestigious AKO Literature Prize and the European Union Prize for Literature. It has since been translated into twelve languages, including German (Die niederländische Jungfrau, Suhrkamp Verlag) and English (The Dutch Maiden, World Editions). In 2013, her third novel, Roundhay, tuinscène (Roundhay Garden Scene) was shortlisted for the Libris Prize for Literature and will be published in German by Hanser Verlag in spring 2019 under the title Aus dem Licht. Her short story collection Gezellige verhalen (Cozy Stories) was awarded the Netherlands’ leading prize for short fiction in 2016. Her latest novel Foon (Phon) was published in October 2018 and has received outstanding reviews in the Dutch press.
‘ An impressive gallop along the thin line between Ernst Jünger and Leo Tolstoy. Her natural metaphors come with animalistic power, her reflections are as clever as distinctive and the way she conjures up the sultry, stormy atmosphere on the eve of the Second World War testifies of a great story telling ability.’ (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung)
‘ An addictive novel of cruel beauty… one of the most delicious novels I’ve read in ages.‘ (The New York Times)
‘ Dutch literature has won a very original writer, one with an apparent inexhaustible imagination, who will, hopefully, write many more novels, as exhilarating as this one.’ (Trouw about The Dutch Maiden)
‘ At a time when literature is dominated by the explicable, it’s a blessing to hear a lonely voice singing a wondrously beautiful paean to mystery.’ (Vrij Nederland on Phon)
**** ‘ The Moor has woven a phenomenal web. A brilliant novel (…) in which thoughts of transience and futility leave the reader astonished. And the second reading has yet to come.’ (NRC Handelsblad on Roundhay Garden Scene)
***** ‘ I defy you to find anyone to rival De Moor’s way with a metaphor. She’ll take you on a train journey to the light of the first filmmakers, pointing out shadows in the landscape along the way. [...] A universal and breathtaking novel.’ (De Limburger on Roundhay Garden Scene)
‘ What a delicious helping of misery she serves the reader. What utterly enjoyable hardship. Far less than De Moor generously offers us, page after page, sentence after sentence, would already give cause for celebration.’ (Vrij Nederland on Cozy Stories)