Are you passionate about reading? Find out more about the top 7 best Swedish writers and find something new to read. Meet the best today’s Swedish writers.
While it would be an exaggeration to say that Scandinavia in general and Sweden, in particular, occupy any kind of dominant position in terms of literature, writers from this region certainly have been under the spotlight over the last few years.
Scandinavian literature is in vogue – older works get republished, and many contemporary authors get translated into English and other languages, finding their international readers for the first time. Even high school and college students often have to deal with them in their homework these days – it is not uncommon to see students Googling something like “Can someone do my essay on…”, following it with a traditionally unpronounceable Nordic name.
So, if you are still unfamiliar with modern Swedish literature, it is probably high time to jump on the bandwagon and join in the fun, whether your goal is to write a paper on this topic or just to find something to read.
So, do you ask yourself, “What authors should I start my inroad into Swedish literature with? Where will I find writing that will suit me?” Here we have collected some of the most interesting contemporary Swedish writers that await your attention.
Linda Boström Knausgård
Linda Boström Knausgård is a master of dark and complex narrative verging on the stream of consciousness. For example, her second novel, Welcome to America, tells the story of Ellen, a child suffering from severe trauma after the death of her father, to the point that she possibly can never talk again. With her contact with the outside world cut off, the reader is literally plunged into her dark inner world where she has to navigate a complex labyrinth of feelings of grief and shame as she tries to do something about her situation. It is not an easy book to read by any approximation, but if you like narratives that make you think, it is well worth your money.
Fredrik Backman is a New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove and numerous other books. As a writer, Backman somehow manages to find ways to combine poignant observations about life, hilarious black comedy, and unexpected twists and turns of the plot that you just have to experience first-hand. His latest novel, Anxious People, tells a story of a bank robbery gone wrong, a robber who somehow completely disappears, and a set of entertaining (and true to the name, anxious) characters who suddenly realize that they have much more in common than they care to admit.
John Ajvide Lindqvist
John Ajvide Lindqvist is best known for the 2004 vampire fiction book Let the Right One In. However, if you take a look at the genre and dismiss it as one that probably is built on cheap scares, you will make a mistake. Lindqvist is someone who, in this day and age, can write a book about vampires that still manages to surprise and make your blood run cold without resorting to any typical tricks of the genre.
Leif G.W. Persson
Detective literature is probably the most well-known genre of Swedish literature, and Leif G.W. Persson is one of its most notable representatives. As a real criminologist who did a lot of research in his line of work, he knows all ins and outs of how police actually works and makes full use of this knowledge in his books.
Margareta Magnusson is not a fiction writer, but it does not make her work any less fascinating. Over the last few years, her name has been regularly mentioned on a variety of websites dedicated to the concepts of decluttering and tidying up. Even if you have read the books by the likes of Kon Mari and Marla Cilley, you will still find a lot of interesting ideas in Margareta Magnusson’s book The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning. In it, she researches the uniquely Swedish concept of döstädning, or “death cleaning” – in other words, the process of getting rid of unnecessary clutter one has to carry out at some point of life so that others do not have to do it after his/her death. Those who do it do not necessarily intend to die anytime soon – they simply look through their possessions trying to get rid of everything that is not essential. Even if it is not the first book on decluttering you read, if you pay attention to the tips it offers, you can certainly add a bit of Scandinavian style to your living space.
Liza Marklund is another popular author of Swedish crime fiction, known for her “Annika Bengtzon” series of novels. It is centered around the eponymous Annika Bengtzon, a woman juggling her journalistic career and relationships with her spouse and children while regularly getting involved in criminal cases. Liza Marklund combines a gripping narrative with vivid language that allows her readers to virtually see the landscapes of the frozen Swedish north as they follow the intricacies of yet another complex plot.
Stieg Larsson with his Millennium Series is probably the author who did most to bring about the rise of Swedish detective and criminal literature over the last two decades. His books combine elements of family sagas, murder mysteries, high-scale financial intrigues, and many other things, creating a gripping narrative that forces readers to go on until they turn the last page. It is not all about cheap thrills, however – Larsson’s prose is not just suspenseful and fascinating, but also intelligent and beautiful in and of itself. If you want to choose a single author to get acquainted with contemporary Swedish literature, you should probably choose Stieg Larsson.
Whether you are looking for an unusual topic to write an essay about, or are genuinely interested in learning more about the literature of Sweden in particular and Scandinavia in general, these authors are a good starting point. You can find plenty of essays about them both online and offline if you want to find out more about their writing.
Meet the Best Today’s Swedish Writers! Written exclusively for Daily Scandinavian by Kimberly Austin. Kimberly is a contributing ghostwriter at DoMyPapers.com. She finds great pleasure in teaching English and helping students across the globe adopt creative approach to essay writing.