Saturday, July 19, 2008

Scandinavian Mystery Writers

From Readers:

"The last book I read that I really enjoyed was Before The Frost by Henning Mankell, a mystery series written by a Swedish author." [Spinster]

Sandra: I read Before the Frost by Henning Mankell a couple of years ago and meant to read more of his. I went on to try other Scandinavian mystery writers and never got back to him again.
Jo Nesbo of Norway is especially good. I read each as they come out in English translation, they are often prize winners. They are set in Oslo:

Redbreast****1/2 Glass Key Award, Duncan Lawrie International Dagger Award, Book Sense Pick

The Devil's Star****1/2
Nemesis ****
Arnaldur Indridason of Iceland is a favourite:

Tainted Blood, also called Jar City****
Silence of The Grave will be my next one
Hakan Nesser of Sweden is a favourite also:

Borkmann's Point**** Duncan Lawrie International Award
The Return****1/2
Mind's Eye****
Kjell Eriksson of Sweden:

The Cruel Night of the Stars****
The Princess of Burundi***1/2

Something interesing in Swedish crime fiction:

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

This is getting good reviews everywhere. Sadly, the writer has died at 50 of heart failure and will not see his book's success.

Ffrom The Sunday Times (London) of Jan.20.08:

"Before he started writing novels, Larsson was a campaigning journalist. He dedicated his life to opposing racism, contributing for many years to Searchlight, the British anti-fascist magazine. At the same time, he was writing fiction and eventually sent one of his novels to a Swedish publisher, who snapped it up."

"...Larsson’s other great preoccupation was violence against women, and the scarcely believable horrors (the charcter) Blomkvist unearths are as rooted in misogyny as they are in fascism."

I enjoy Swedish mysteries very much and will be trying this one.

Mystery Writers Mark Billingham (Australia) and Gregg Hurwitz (US)

from a previous post:

"The last current fiction I read was Buried by Mark Billingham. It was good, but there were some bits that were slightly predictable. For the record I would recommend all of the Tom Thorne books by Billingham, but particularly Sleepyhead, The Burning Girl and Lifeless." [williamthebloody]

Sandra: On this advice I read Sleepyhead **** by Mark Billingham (2001)
Great mystery/suspense! I will be reading more of these novels, ty wtb.

UPDATE July 19: I have since read all of his books except the last one, Death Message. Boy do I like them. And there's a new one to be released in September, In The Dark. The detective main character, Tom Thorne, is feisty but has a well-developed conscience.Very good mystery/crime novels. Set In London, England. After Sleepyhead I read them in order but each stands alone well too.

Scaredy Cat****
The Burning Girl****
Death Message...
In The Dark (Sept. 2008 release date)

"I heard that "The Crime Writer" is good... what are your thoughts on it?" [Railroadmom]

Sandra: If you mean The Crime Writer**** by Gregg Hurwitz, it is good. I've liked every one of his books so far, my favourite is Do No Harm****1/2. I also recommend:

The Program****
Minutes To Burn****
The Kill Clause****
Last Shot****
What I've read lately:

The Other**** by David Guterson (US) Literary fiction 256 pgs. Hardcover
Author of Snow Falling on Cedars, among others.

Trauma**** by Patrick Mcgrath (Ireland) Literary fiction 210 pgs. Hardcover
I like any story about psychiatrists who have...well, psychiatric problems.
I read Asylum**** and just had to have more of this writer.

The Invention of Everything Else**** by Samantha Hunt (US)

Breath**** by Tim Winton (Australia) Literary fiction 218 pgs. Hardcover

Atmospheric Disturbances*** by Rivka Galchen (US) literary fiction 240 pgs.
Another one about a disturbed psychiatrist.

Winterwood**** by Patrick McCabe (Ireland) Literary fiction 242 pgs.
It sneaks up on you, very good writing.

"A truly good book is something as wildly natural and primitive, mysterious, and marvellous, ambrosial and fertile as a fungus or a lichen."
Henry David Thoreau
Comments on this post:

Asylum is an amazing book! [SwimmingInTheRain]

I will check these out. They sound good. [Immortal Beloved]


I'm currently reading The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. It's good thus far. [williamthebloody]

Just thought I'd give you a heads up. In The Dark was released over here last week and it turns out that it's a stand alone thriller, not one of the Tom Thorne books. (British crime writers seem to be doing this a lot this year. Stuart MacBride has just released a stand alone thriller as well.) [williamthebloody]

1 comment:

  1. You have really found the best Scandinavian writers :)
    I have not really got into Kjell Eriksson, but really like the others. Unfortunately, the 2-3 best Danish crime authors are not translated into English (not yet, at least. I think one of them may be on the way).



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