Reading intentions and Swedish crime fiction awards

Posted: November 19, 2013 in Book Awards, England, Historical, Norway, Scandinavia, Sweden

51gVF35NXJL 515Lxi9mZ8L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_51diL7EFSdL._I finished reading John Lawton’s Then We Take Berlin last week [review to appear in due 51BvycWWroL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_SX385_SY500_CR,0,0,385,500_SH20_OU02_course at EuroCrime] and have moved on to read some of the books eligible for the 2014 Petrona Award.  

Full details at

At the moment I am over half way through the 600+ page Hakan Nesser blockbuster The Strangler’s Honeymoon and enjoying it immensely, despite the length. The book, translated by Laurie Thompson, is over 10 years old as it was originally published in Swedish in 2001 as “Svalan, Katten, Rosen, Doden” which translates as “Swallow, the cat, the rose, the death”. Curious, but no doubt all will become clear before the conclusion.

Incidentally the award for the Best Swedish crime novel of 2013, and the Best translated novel will be awarded on 23 November details below of the nominees, who include three previous winners of the basta svenska kriminalromaner. Hakan Nesser won in 1994, 1996 and 2007; Johan Theorin in 2008; and Arne Dahl in 2011. My own selection for the svenska oversatta kriminaroman, having read three of the nominated books, would be Polis by Jo Nesbo, but we won’t have long to wait to discover the judges verdict.

Svenska Deckarakademin har nominerat årets bästa svenska kriminalromaner:

Christoffer Carlsson: Den osynlige mannen från Salem, Piratförlaget
Arne Dahl: Blindbock, Bonniers
Håkan Nesser: Levande och döda i Winsford, Bonniers
Johan Theorin: Rörgast, W&W
Katarina Wennstam: Stenhjärtat, Bonniers

Nominerade till 2013 års bästa till svenska översatta kriminalroman är:

S. J. Bolton: Odödlig, översättning: Karl G. och Lilian Fredriksson, Modernista
Gillian Flynn: Gone Girl, översättning: Ulla Danielsson, Modernista
Dror Mishani: Utsuddade spår, översättning: Nils Larsson, Brombergs
Jo Nesbø: Polis, översättning: Per Olaisen, Pirat
Ferdinand von Schirach: Fallet Collini, översättning: Lena Hammargren, Bonniers

Vilka böcker som får pris som årets bästa blir klart lördagen den 23 november då Svenska Deckarakademin håller sitt höstmöte på Deckarbiblioteket i Eskilstuna.     

  1. Margot Kinberg says:

    Norman – I’m glad you’re enjoying the Nesser. Some authors are like that; they’re so talented that you enjoy the novels and stay engaged all the way through even though the novel is long. That takes talent.

  2. Norman Price says:

    Margot- I love his dry humour, and the character studies that almost amount to a sociological text book. I also feel an empathy with Van Veeteren as in 1988 I almost bought a book shop! It would probably not have been a good business decision in view of the rise of Amazon, but who knows.

  3. Philip Amos says:

    Thank you so much for this info, Norman. I’m presently into Nesbo’s Police and very much enjoying it. But the author I’d be especially interested in reading is Ferdinand von Schirach, a criminal lawyer and grandson of Baldur von Schirach, the leader of the Hitler Youth and a convicted war criminal who served twenty years. I want to take a closer look at Ferdinand for, though what I saw may be just a statistical cluster, I have an inkling that his law practice may be somewhat influenced by his disgust with his grandfather. And mayhap his crime novels also. I hope you are keeping well, old friend.

    • Norman Price says:

      Philip-It is very nice to hear from you again.
      I am fine just hoping that we don’t get the extreme winter the forecasters are promising us. Although I could stay indoors and just read!
      Glad you are enjoying Police in my opinion it marks a return to form for Jo Nesbo.
      I have stayed away from the von Schirach in case it did not meet my expectations as to his disgust with grandfather Baldur and the level of post war punishment for some Nazi officials. The Collini Case was nominated for the CWA International Dagger as well as the Swedish award ironically along with the Israeli author Mishani on both occasions.
      Best wishes

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  5. kathy d. says:

    The Collini Case is good and worth reading, although while reading about the virtual impunity given by German law to war criminals, I felt like throwing the book against a wall. That said, it’s a good book. I believe it caused quite a stir in Germany.

    I like Van Veeteren, too, and Nesser’s writing, including the sometimes stunning wit. I don’t know that I’m up to a 600-plus page book right now, but I will get to this one eventually.

    And again I ask, why are books so long these days? Nesser has written some good books that are quite a bit shorter. Are writers being paid by the page now?

  6. Sarah says:

    Loved the Nesser and the original title isn’t clear at all I’m afraid. I have a clear favourite for the Petrona but I suspect there will be plenty if room for debate!

  7. Norman Price says:

    Kathy I don’t think my walls or my blood pressure are up to The Collini Case at the moment. 😉

    Sarah-a clear favourite for the Petrona 2014? I wonder…….

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