…and more links

PBS highlights international crime fiction with a rather sophisticated site – Both Karin Fossum (Norway) and Arnaldur Indridason are featured.

Glenn Harper reviews Yrsa Sigurdardóttir’s My Soul to Take – and wonders which is the better cover at representing the Icelandic setting. He prefers Arnaldur’s series, but says this second book in the Thóra Gudmundsdóttir series “revisits the Gothic realm and revivals of myth in contemporary life, but in a lighter, frequently comic, and rural vein.”

He also says “I’m hoping that Árni Thórarinsson’s urban noir novels, very succesful in Europe, will soon make their way into English.” Fingers crossed.

Peter reviews Henning Mankell’s One Step Behind at Nordic Bookblog.

Shaz wonders (toward the bottom of this Dead Guy post) “Are there any humorous Scandinavian crime novels? If not, would someone like to remedy the situation to save what’s left of my sanity?” No worries, Sharon – there’s plenty of humor in there. Just ask Peter Rozovsky. He has some insightful things to say in a 2007 interview with Julia Buckley:

I do notice a common theme of sympathy in the work of Swedish crime writers, a concern for investigators, criminals, suspects and friends, relatives and lovers of all the above. Håkan Nesser shares that sympathy and also the proverbial Swedish concern for social justice. His novels also have a playful sense of humor, which is probably not a generalization many people would make about Swedish crime fiction.

Michael Walters writes about Jo Nesbo’s excellent series featuring the complicated hero, Harry Hole. Walters comments on the translations (by Don Bartlett, who recently spoke at CrimeFest and caused a bit of swooning in the audience), their out-of-order publication in English, and Harry’s “dry-as-dust, sometimes bitter irony.”

good news

Steph’s wonderful WhereDunnit blog is full of good news.

Sunnie has her reservations about The Girl Who Played With Fire – and wonders if anyone else did. “Good in parts but annoying and exasperating in others.”  (She calls it a “curate’s egg” – a new phrase to me, but possibly a good book title, eh?)

Cathy Skye reflects on The Princess of Burundi – mixed feelings, but worth reading: “There was just enough of main character Ann Lindell there for me to know that she’s someone special that I would like to get to know better. (I would suggest that, if she has any more children, her maternity leave occurs between books and not right in the middle of one!) I also found Eriksson’s descriptions of Sweden and Swedish society to be very good. As I was reading, I felt as though I were there crunching through the endless snow and becoming better acquainted with the people.”

crimeficreader thinks highly of Camilla Läckberg’s The Preacher and writes a lovely and thorough review to explain why. Go read it.

If you’re going to CrimeFest you can hear all about the art of translation in the “Foreign Correspondant” panel. I believe this is all Maxine’s fault, or is it Karen’s? Anyway, never underestimate the power of blog comments.

Nordic Crime at Harrogate

The inexhaustable Karen Meek published a fine round-up of a panel at the Harrogate Festival on Nordic Crime. It includes some discussion of the debt owed to Sjowall and Waloo’s ground-breaking Marin Beck series as well as the difficulty of translating a book into English that suits both a US and UK audience. (Translations of Mari Jungstedt and Helene Tursten both came in for criticism, though the only specific mentioned was that they were American.) Then there is a round-robin of recommendations from all of the Scandinavian countries. I was pleased to see Jo Nebso and Arnaldur Indridason mentioned, two of my favorites. The comments are well worth a read, too.