un-Finnish-ed business

Peter would like the Finnish writing community to get a bit more proactive about promoting their writers so we can get more English translations. He mentions the small publisher, Ice Cold Crime, but thinks there’s a lot of good stuff that we’re overlooking. Peter also recently reviewed Matti Joensuu’s To Steal Her Love, which he think is terrific and very Finnish.

James Thompson introduces a Finnish – uh, or maybe not Finnish, a citizen of the world – Joel Kuntonen who has traveled nearly everywhere on a Finnish passport but hates snow.  Jim also points out that Stieg Larsson is dead; get over it already, and writes a love song to Bill Gates, Sergey Brin, and Larry Page while under the influence of painkillers, a root canal, and a migraine. It has touches of Dan Brown. Just don’t piss off his lawyer.

As we are on the subject of Finland, I must give a shout-out to Pulpetti, “short reviews and articles on pulps and paperbacks, adventure, sleaze, hardboiled, noir, you name it. Peppered with some comments on everyday life of a writer and politics (mainly in Finland) and also some very, very high-brow literature.” The author publishes, among many, many other things, the crime fic magazine Isku, not to be confused with Iskra, Lenin’s little Communist Manifesto fanzine.

And whilst I’m at it – aw shucks – sometimes in the next month or two my book, Pyhimysmurha, will be published by Nemo, translated by Pekka Makkonen. Extremely loud “kiitos” to Pekka for pulling this off. The title appears to mean “Saint Homicide.” (The original idiomatic English title, In the Wind, didn’t work.) I like this one, though I am not sure how to pronounce it. PEEhimmisMURha? I will have to light a candle to this patron saint of murder.

photo of sticker art in Tampere, Finland courtesy of katutaide; photo of the altar de muertos courtesy of uteart-traveling.

9 thoughts on “un-Finnish-ed business

  1. This is all good, very interesting on Finnish crime fiction. But also interesting is news of your new book. What is it exactly?

    • I was a bit confusing in how I said that. It’s actually not a new book; it’s just the Finnish translation of In the Wind from 2008. I say that word “just” insouciantly as if it’s just another translation, but actually it’s the only translation of any of my books into another language, and I’m honored that the language in question is Finnish because it’s a wonderful country and I am in awe of anyone who can speak that complex language.

      I did have an essay of mine translated into Catalan once, and that was also exciting.

  2. Switching to Norway for a moment, what is the view about Jo Nesbo? Some readers love his books, others can’t get into them.

    • I love him, myself. His plots can be a bit over the top and not totally believable, but they work as puzzles as well as being propelling in terms of pacing (though not break-neck by any means; my favorite, The Redbreast, has some almost-too-slow parts). And I like his characters and writing style very much. Routinely makes my top ten lists, but I know one bookseller who thought they were overplotted.

  3. Pekka tells me the Y in Finnish is not the way I’m pronouncing it, so I gather from a web search (wherein one finds ALL TRUTH y’know) that the title may be more along the lines of PYUHhimmisMURha. Or perhaps not. I should probably go spend a few years in Helsinki researching the issue.

  4. That word is as difficult as the name of the spouting volcano in Iceland.
    Interesting what you say about Nesbo. I read such contradictory things but I will try his writing although I plan to read lots of Italian and French writers this month in addition to some Scandinavians.

  5. I’m going to try to read “The Redbreast,” “The Mind’s Eye” by Nesser, “The Darkest Room,” by Theorin–and, my treat to myself, “Roseanna,” by Shojall/Wahloo, to add on to the three I’ve read by them.

    Then maybe a break to Camilleri, Gianrico Carofiglio, Anne Cleeves, Pierre Magnan, Martin Walker, Domonique Manotti, Leif Davidsen’s “Woman from Bravislava,” (although Nordic, I think) and a few Australian women authors, “Faithful Place” by Tana French and Arlene Hunt, William Deverell, Vicky Delany. I’d like to read 24/7 but life won’t let me.

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