Everything There Was


Translated by Florian Duijsens

Publication Date:
ISBN: 9781911420149

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The world has ended. What now?

One Sunday, eight people gather at a school to record a television programme. But the show is never made, because the end of the world has arrived. The authorities order all windows, doors and curtains to be closed. And stay closed. They hear nothing more for days, then weeks.

Through the eyes of TV editor Merel, a young woman, we see the group trying to survive in a new world, a world of darkness and isolation, of sleeping on gym mats and living on ten grains of rice a day. The survivors play cards, talk about their past, sleep together: anything to pass the time until their rescue. As food supplies dwindle, tensions mount. And when will the authorities arrive?

At once arresting, original and richly entertaining, Everything There Was is a gripping and disorientating novel that will enthrall readers of The Road or Station Eleven.

Hanna Bervoets (b. 1984) writes novels, essays, and screenplays. Bervoets won the 2009 Debut of the Year Award for her first novel, Or, How, Why. Its followup, Dear Céline, was awarded the Opzij Literature Prize 2012 for best book by a female Dutch author. It has since been adapted for the big screen. After Dear Céline, she made her definitive breakthrough as a novelist with the acclaimed bestseller Everything There Was. Her next novel, Efter, was nominated for the BNG New Literature Prize and reached the longlist of the Golden Book Owl and the Libris Literature Prize. The film rights of Efter have been sold to prominent Dutch producer NL Film. Bervoets' fifth novel, Ivanov, came out in January 2016 and has received high critical acclaim.

Praise for Everything There Was

‘An eye-opening novel that takes a fresh look at everything we’re taking for granted’ Opzij

‘This book grabs you by the throat’ nu.nl

‘One truly clever novel’ De Groene Amsterdammer