• Sweden edition
 
The Local List
Ten Swedish books to read before you die

Ten Swedish books to read before you die

Published: 08 Feb 2013 14:20 GMT+01:00
Updated: 08 Feb 2013 14:20 GMT+01:00

Finally!

That's what journalist Gerty Fylking used to yell at the Swedish Academy press conference revealing that year's winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature.

Because usually, no one had ever heard of the winner.

That changed two years ago when Sweden's favourite poet, Tomas Tranströmer, was recognized for his work.

IN PICTURES: Ten Swedish books to read before you die

Tranströmer's just one of the authors featured on The Local's list of Swedish classics that could be a helping hand for newcomers interested in diving into Swedish culture.

But he's not the only Nobel laureate who made the cut.

The list also features another poet, Edith Södergran, who may be a native of Finland, but is included as because she was a member of of the Finland-Swedish minority in Finland and thus wrote in Swedish.

The list also features the work of a popular, outspoken Swedish historian who often appears on television and in newspapers to offer his two cents (er, öre) about the Swedish royals.

While this celebrity historian's book is far from a work of classic literature, The Local's Editor David Landes recommends it as a good introduction to the history of Sweden.

One book on the list, Harry Martinsson's When Nettles Bloom, is not available in English, but there is a simplified Swedish edition.

And there is a cheeky double whammy for one author.

Ann Törnkvist

Follow Ann on Twitter here

Related links:

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

17:22 February 8, 2013 by intrepidfox
Ten Swedish books to read before you die.

Just looking at the list made me want to die.
19:37 February 8, 2013 by theobserver
Indeed, just looking at the list makes one want to die, and die soon. Not only because of the type of books in the list (Sweden is all about death) but also because there is so little to read in Sweden that you can exhaust the interesting Swedish books very shortly.
21:05 February 8, 2013 by skogsbo
popular music is an OK read, much better than the film. Forget the peoms or anything that has ever won a prize, that usually a ticket to boredom.
11:58 February 9, 2013 by cogito
Life is too short for Swedish books. I might get around to this list, but only after I've read all of Dickens, Proust, Balzac, Faulkner, Cervantes, Garcia-Marques, Fuentes, the Chinese, the Japanese....

Nah, on second thought, I'd rather clean the bathroom than read any of the authors on the list.

There are only two Swedish authors worth reading: Strindberg and Stieg Larsson.
19:02 February 11, 2013 by Phillynilly
Should've been titled. Ten Swedish books to read to make your death even more miserable.......
08:33 February 13, 2013 by RobinHood
I've read all ten. And it's true; now I want to die.
10:06 February 16, 2013 by GraceBee
Ah, our little coven of antillectuals.

Cultural barbarians, every single one of you. Probably all work in IT or banking.

Cogito, if you think Larsson is a great author then I am absolutely certain that you have never read Proust or Balzac.
Today's headlines
Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops
The pharmacy section of a grocery store. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Sweden mulls stripping paracetamol from shops

After a drastic increase in the number of paracetamol poisonings in Sweden, authorities have said the drug should only be available in pharmacies. READ  

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden
File photo: Andreas Hagerman/Flickr

Listeria fears prompt meat recall in Sweden

After finding traces of listeria in ham sold in Sweden, food companies decided on Friday to recall several Danish cold cuts. READ  

Sweden Floods
More rain expected as floods hit day four
Photo: Anders Kjellberg/TT

More rain expected as floods hit day four

UPDATED: Sweden's floods showed no signs of abating over Thursday night, with highways closed, emergency teams working overtime, and more rain on the way. READ  

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans
An Ikea city centre store in Hamburg. Photo: TT

Ikea opens first store in the Balkans

Swedish furniture giant Ikea has opened its first store in the former Yugoslavia, near Croatia's capital Zagreb. The move marks the company's first step in an expansion to the Balkans market. READ  

Elections 2014
'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'
Jimmie Åkesson. Photo: Bertil Ericson/TT

'Sweden Democrats hold the key to elections'

With national elections around the corner, political scientist Stig-Björn Ljunggren says there's a hive of activity behind the scenes, and that the right-wing nationalist party could end up being the key player. READ  

Swedish artist jailed for 'race hate' pictures
Police arrested Dan Park (pictured) and confiscated his art works at an exhibition opening on July 5th. Photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Swedish artist jailed for 'race hate' pictures

A Malmö court has sentenced Swedish street artist Dan Park to six months in jail for incitement to racial agitation and defamation. READ  

Elections 2014
Sweden elections: How do they work?
Casting a vote. Photo: Shutterstock

Sweden elections: How do they work?

National, regional, and local elections are taking place in Sweden on September 14th. Whether you're a first-time voter or a fresh armchair observer, The Local's beginners' guide will answer the key questions you were too afraid to ask. READ  

Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination
A Romani language class in Malmö. Photo: Drago Prvulovic/TT

Sweden orders textbook on Roma discrimination

The Swedish government has asked a new commission to create school materials based on a white paper documenting Swedish discrimination of Roma. READ  

Day-care rapist
Day-care rape suspect 'was mentally ill'
Photo: TT

Day-care rape suspect 'was mentally ill'

Social services have ruled that a day-care intern charged with molesting 14 children in southern Sweden was "seriously mentally disturbed". READ  

What's On in Sweden

What's On in Sweden

Autumn has arrived in Sweden, which means grey skies are approaching. But summer goes out with a skip, hop, and a bang - the annual Color Run is taking place in Stockholm this weekend. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Finest.se
Gallery
People-watching August 20th
Society
Did you know the Bronx in NYC was named after a Swede?
Politics
"Iraq reminds me of the Yugoslav wars. It's the same story."
Society
Swedes slam Danes for 'racist' art
National
Majority of Swedes favour more or just as many refugees
Blog updates

17 August

Sea Fever (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I’m going to keep this post short and sweet as its not something I take any pleasure in writing. After much deliberation I have made the heartbreaking decision to abandon my trip after 1200km due to reoccurring injury. It is not a decision I have made lightly and it is one that has been truly devastating..." READ »

 

17 August

St. Louis strong (Blogweiser) »

"It’s typically a bad sign when my hometown makes news in Sweden. St. Louis was in the headlines here a few years ago when a tornado struck the airport. The city also caught attention after a politician talked about ‘legitimate rape’. Now, shooting and riots this week in Ferguson, a part of St. Louis, are..." READ »

 
 
 
Society
Lock your bathrooms: Swedish toilet invader on the the loose
Politics
'Assange will not leave until safe'
Gallery
See more images from the southern Sweden floods
Sponsored Article
Find out what gives this Swedish school executive appeal
Society
Serial chicken smuggler caught at Norway border. Again.
Society
This gold coin may be the key to solving a Swedish massacre
Shutterstock
Lifestyle
The Swedish mentor (and why you may need one)
National
Food agency warns girls: 'Don't eat stinky fish'
Politics
Reinfeldt calls for tolerance to refugees
Gallery
People-watching August 16-17
National
Sweden celebrates 200 years of peace
Society
Top ten literal Swedish words
Politics
'Terror training should be illegal': Liberal Party
Gallery
Swedes talk about 200 years of national peace
Politics
Islamic extremist shakes Sweden with TV threat
National
Teacher fined for 'Hitler salute' in German class
National
Swede asks for epidural and gets disinfectant
Features
Kiruna residents talk life in a town on the move
National
Swedish dad takes kids to Israel to learn about war
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing...Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

714
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se