Man is the Most Beautiful City


San Francisco is a self-proclaimed adventurer from the Horn of Africa currently stuck in Northern Europe. His bag of money is empty. The borders are closed. Life at this new place is all about figuring out a way to leave. Leave for the shimmer, for America. There’s more to the journey than getting there, like the people you meet and find solace in. Manni, who is looking online for women to marry for a chance of getting papers. Richard, who used to be Hussein, and who believes that men in suits are out to get him. Isol, with a gun in her purse. Madam on The Island who is looking after the park after her husband passed away. And Yei, beloved, crazy Yei, who is lost along the way but later found again. 

Everything is in motion, everyone is on the fence. Everyone is being hunted. But by what? Loan sharks? Secret service? Border control? Masked Black Roosters looking to reclaim the island? Or are they hunted by their own story?

So what, says Yei. Let the demons come.

There has to be something out there for us, says San Francisco, there just has to.

Sami Said

Original title:
Människan är den vackraste staden

September 2018


Original publisher:
Natur & Kultur

Reading material:
Swedish manuscript (final)
English translation

367 pp.

Nominated for the 2019 Nordic Council Literature Prize

Shortlisted for the 2018 August Prize

France/Editions du Seuil
The Netherlands/De Geus