Annika Scheffel

It’s Nice Here - Novel

(German title: Hier ist es schön)
ca. 350 pages
Annika Scheffel
Foto: Annika Scheffel
© Heike Steinweg

Annika Scheffel, born in 1983 in Hannover, is a novelist and screenwriter. Her debut novel Ben was published in 2010 and featured on the SWR best books list. Annika Scheffel lives with her family in Berlin. Before It All Disappears is her first book with Suhrkamp. In 2015, she was awarded the Robert-Gernhardt-Prize.

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»They have given you a map of the stars to travel the world.«


On a day in August, Irma decides to leave earth, to turn her back on her parents and her friends and become a heroine. In a spectacular television show, she is chosen to populate a new planet together with the mysterious Sam. But then Sam unexpectedly changes his mind. He, having grown up isolated from the rest of the world, flees. He finally wants answers to his questions about his heritage, his history. And so Sam and Irma set out on a journey – not to space, but through dead forests, hostile cities, along empty roads. They discover a broken world of surreal beauty, chased – or steered? – by powers that pull strings in the background like puppeteers.

As fantastical as it is current, It’s Nice Here is a novel about humanity’s delusions of grandeur, the exploitation of nature, total surveillance, the cynicism of reality tv shows – but most of all, it’s a novel about wishing and dreaming, a tender portrait of two young people and their fight for freedom and autonomy.


»Annika Scheffel is fighting a writer’s battle in her own way. To describe people, life, love in a lasting way. Staying alive and beautiful.« Volker Weidermann, FAZ

»An exciting and clever road-movie in which the author brings together many themes and considerations.« ORF

»In the dialogues ... Anika Scheffel’s wordplay sparkles ... « Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

»It’s Nice Here is a skilful mix of bleak science fiction and road-movie.« Fritz rbb

»As fantastic as it is current, Annika Scheffel depicts a couple against the backdrop of the end of the world and reality show-delirium.« rbb inforadio

»Guaranteed: It’s Nice Here will take your breath away.« zuckerkick.com

Other publications

Bevor alles verschwindet/Before It All Disappears (2013)

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Turkey (Aylak Adam)

Domestic Rights Sales: German Audiobook (Jumbo/GoyaLit)