NOVEL, 632 pages
ISBN: 978-960-9527-81-1

Shortlist European Union Price for Literature (EUPL) 2014

Longlist Athens Prize for Literature 2014

Louisa Laskaratou, a greek anthropologist working in Oxford, returns to Athens after her father’s sudden death. Petros, a young associate at her father’s lawfirm, will deliver to her his last message: a photograph, unknown to her until now, of the painting of a famous innovative 19th century scottish painter which was stolen from her family during the German Occupation. Soon, Louisa will suspect that here, there is much more than another case of a looted work of art by the Nazis. The story of the painting seems to be inextricably bound with the mystery that shadows the execution in 1944 of her father’s mother, a young painter at the time, Louiz Hatzilouka. But, the truth, as well as the fate of the painting are still unknown…

Through the search of a lost painting, the novel explores the delicate bonds which connect the present with the past, the sense of loss with memory, but also the distance between what has happened and that which is remembered, the truth and its narratives.

Film rights

Praise for A Certain Quality of Light in the Greek press

“Papaliou’s great achievement is that she makes you read her book with two conflicting feelings: on the one hand you want to finish, in order to find out how the story ends, on the other, you wish to go on and on, so as to prolong the
pleasure of its reading…One of the best realistic novels of recent years”. G.N. Fertis, Eleftherotypia

“A Certain Quality of Light has an impeccable structure and a plot that makes it truly impossible to put down.” S. Kasimatis, Kathimerini

“The novel’s major virtue is that it intertwines its different themes into a coherent whole, with a perfectly organized plot which keeps its secrets to the very end, working towards the final resolution step by step, with great craft.” V.Chatzivasiliou, To Vima tis Kyriakis

“…an exceptional linguistic achievement, flowing with intense theatricality, revealing dialogues, a greek writing that embelishes modern fiction…a real masterpiece”. Ch. Papageorgiou, diastixo.gr

“The well-crafted plot, the gradual buildup of action until the final resolution, the intense suspense and careful depiction of the characters’ mental and emotional state, especially of its two heroines, make A Certain Quality of Light a delightful novel”. D. Rouboula, Ethnos

“Excellent tight plot, its various strands masterfully crafted.” T. Dimitroulia, Kathimerini

“One can admire the economy of the novel, which in over six hundred pages manages to connect the events, the characters and the progression of the plot in a superb summation, reimbursing the reader”. G. N. Perantonakis, BOOKPRESS

“A multi-layered, ambitious structure, an indefatigable search of truth, but also of its meaning, and the various ways it is constructed.” E. Kotzia, metarithmisi