An estimated 200 million women worldwide are impacted by endometriosis. Norwegian author Karen Havelin, herself a sufferer of this chronic illness, wrote Please Read This Leaflet Carefully to address a subject considered too private, embarrassing, or female to be worthy of serious literary attention. Following a reverse chronology that subverts the typical illness story, the novel follows Laura Fjellstad in her struggles to live a normal life after having been diagnosed with severe endometriosis in her twenties. Please Read This Leaflet Carefully is an anti-bildungsroman that examines motherhood, menopause, sexual identity, love, and relationships where they intersect with bodily frailty. Many women live with pain that is not taken seriously by the medical establishment. Please Read This Leaflet Carefully is for those women, for anyone interested in gender and bodies, and for all people with a disability, injury, or chronic illness.
Karen Havelin is a writer and translator from Bergen, Norway. She received her MFA in fiction from Columbia University. She lives in Oslo, Norway. Her work has been published in Agave Magazine, Words Without Borders, Brooklyn Quarterly, Narrative North East, Lunch Ticket among others, as well as several Norwegian literary magazines.
Kira von Eichel is a Brooklyn-based freelance writer, mother of two, and co-founder of (late, great) Downtown for Democracy. Some know her as the better half of Brownstoner/Brooklyn Flea/Smorgasburg, a passionate dirndl-wearer, and paragon of Deutscher Stil.