two for the road

Allison Flood of the Guardian points out that Scandinavian crime fiction is making waves (does her surname lead to nautical metaphors?), topping European bestseller lists.  Stieg Larsson, not too surprisingly, takes first place. Micheal Carlson finds the study an Irresistible Target. The number of Swedes on the list is striking; so is the paucity of English (UK and US) titles, but Carlson points out that both J.K. Rowling and Stephanie Meyer would have vied for second place except they’re not writing for adults.  Peter also comments at his Nordic Bookblog.

Two Scandinavian mysteries are included on Booklist’s list of best debuts of the year – Tim Davys’s Amberville (“everything works in Davys’ surprisingly metaphysical take on some classic crime-fiction tropes. The publisher describes it as The Big Sleep meets Animal Farm, and frankly, we can’t do any better than that”) and Johann Theorin’s Echoes from the Dead (“Theorin skillfully uses dramatic irony to draw the reader into the story. Sweden landed on the crime-fiction map with Henning Mankell’s procedurals, but Marie Jungstedt, Asa  Larsson, and now Theorin have added psychological thrillers to the mix. “) There’s also a hard-boiled gazeteer entry – this time for Latin America.


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