NOTE: You can find the covers and details for each books selected beneath the end of the list.
1) JO NESBO: "KILLING MOON" (Harry Hole #13/Pub. date: May 25, 2023)
The absolute killer release for every self-respecting Nordic crime fiction fan, Harry Hole's comeback after 4 years of silence is an event to be celebrated and Jo Nesbo's devotees are in for a treat as the synopsis looks promising and the Norwegian superstar author's signature is a guarantee for high-caliber entertainment. The beginning of Killing Moon finds Harry in Los Angeles, but he will be forced to return to Oslo when a woman she cares about is abducted. Harry assembles a rogue group of former operatives and the story takes off. There are rumors that Nesbo intends to end Harry's saga soon, so there is a possibility that Killing Moon will be one of the last installments in this legendary series.
2) KARIN SMIRNOFF: "THE GIRL IN THE EAGLE'S TALONS" (Millenium #7/Pub. date: August 29, 2023)
Swedish ex-journalist and current fiction writer Karin Smirnoff picks up from David Lagercrantz in the continuation of Stieg Larsson's legendary Millenium saga, originally planned as a 10-part series, though the late publisher of the anti-racist "Expo" magazine only managed to write the first three installments. From then on, it was David Lagercrantz, co-author of the acclaimed autobiography I Am Zlatan Ibrahimović, who was called to keep Larsson's spirit and popular protagonists, journalist Mikael Blomkvist and punk-hacker Lisbeth Salander, alive putting his signature under the following three novels. Now it's Karin Smirnoff's, author of the well-received My Brother, turn to leave her own mark in the most popular Nordic crime fiction book series ever. Sarah Death is the translator, so we can be rest assured that nothing will be reduced from the original text.
3) LARS KEPLER: "THE SPIDER" (Joona Linna #9/Pub. date: July 25, 2023)
This is the ninth part in a series which won the global readership, offering thrills and chills as well as some of the most loathsome and memorable villains that ever appeared in the genre's works. The couple of Alexander and Alexandra Ahndoril, who co-write under the nom de plume of Lars Kepler, know how to create nightmarish scenarios and their protagonist, Inspector Joona Linna, is a well-crafted character with a heartbreaking personal story which is revealed to the readers in the course of the series. Jurek Walter, Linna's arch-nemesis, may be dead but there are more sinister criminals stalking the streets of Stockholm and in The Spider, Joona will team up with his colleague and friend Saga Bauer in order to stop a killer who likes to play mind games with the authorities, sending riddles to the police investigators. This is a must-read for the fans of the Nordic thriller tradition.
4) ARNALDUR INDRIDASON: "THE GIRL BY THE BRIDGE" (Detective Konrad #2/Pub. date: May 2, 2023)
Arnaldur Indridason is the unequivocal "King" of Icelandic crime fiction and there is not a single fan of the genre who is oblivious of his most popular fictional creation, Inspector Erlendur, whose investigations have been featured in a series of 14 books. Indridason is the sole author to win the Glass Key Award for Best Nordic Crime Novel two years in a row, for Jar City and Silence of the Grave. The Girl by the Bridge is the second book in his latest undertaking, the Konráð Series, and the story is revolved around the retired detective's investigation of a young woman's, who is suspected of being involved in shady activities like drug smuggling, disappearance. If this second installment is of equal quality to the previous one (The Darkness Knows), then we are talking about one of the hottest new releases of the year.
5) JENNY LUND MADSEN: "THIRTY DAYS OF DARKNESS" (Pub. date: May 25, 2023)
The first debut thriller in the list, Jenny Lund Madsen's Thirty Days of Darkness is the story of a successful literary fiction author, Hanna, who is suffering from an extreme version of writer's block. When she publicly expresses her distaste of genre fiction, she is challenged to write a novel in thirty days in order to prove her claims about how easy it is to write a genre piece. Panicked, Hanna will flee Copenhagen and travel to Iceland to isolate herself and battle her feelings of self- contempt created by the block. However, a little while after she arrives in the Icelandic little village, the body of a young boy is dredged up from from the water and Hanna will find herself entangled in an adventure resembling a fictional detective novel. I am intrigued by the synopsis and curious to see if another star is rising in the ever-expanding Danish crime fiction scene.
6) M. T. EDVARDSSON: "THE WOMAN INSIDE" (Pub. date: June 13, 2023)
With his debut crime novel, A Nearly Normal Family, M. T. Edvardsson became instantly a name to look out for when searching for page-turners, brimming with twists and compelling characters. The novel was adapted into television series by Netflix and is going to be aired in 2023 (the exact date hasn't been announced yet). The Woman Inside is the Swedish author's second writing endeavor and we all hope that the notorious "curse of the second book" will not afflict his attempt to establish his reputation for good among his peers. The story is about a widower who is struggling to make ends meet and decides to welcome a lodger in his house, a young law student who is going to change his life in ways that he couldn't even imagine. I was a fervent fans of Edvardsson's debut and I've already pre-ordered his second outing. I can only hope that I won't be let down.
7) TOVE ALSTERDAL: "YOU WILL NEVER BE FOUND" (High Coast #2/Pub. date: January 31, 2023)
Tove Alsterdal's You Will Never Be Found is the second volume in her latest High Coast series, the first one being We Know You Remember in which she introduced Detective Eira Sjodin, an intriguing protagonist who embarks on her second investigation. Eira will get involved in an inquiry concerning a disappearance that hits close to home. The story is as much about the investigation as it is about Eira's personal issues, namely her grief over her mother's illness, and her clumsy attempts to overcome them through casual affairs with random men. Alstedal's pen is elegant as well as sharp and every new release bearing her signature is worthy of the wait.
8) ÅSA LARSSON: "THE SINS OF OUR FATHERS" (Rebecka Martinsson-Arctic Murders #6/Pub. date: May 23, 2023)
The long-awaited return of Åsa Larsson in Nordic crime fiction literature's corporeality is now a fact and The Sins of Our Fathers signifies the ending of the beloved Rebecka Martinsson-Arctic Murders saga, a series consisting of 6 books in total. A television adaptation featuring Ida Engvoll in the role of the workaholic Stockholm lawyer who returns to Kiruna -her hometown located in the northernmost parts of Sweden- in order to make a fresh start made the character known to the global audience and boomed Larsson's reputation as one of the most prolific Swedish crime writers. Of course, Rebecka soon gets involved in the investigations of puzzling crimes committed within the closed confines of the local community while striving to establish meaningful relationships with the people that she cares about. It will be interesting to see the conclusion of the series and what the author has in store for her multitude of fans eagerly waiting for this release.
9) RAGNAR JONASSON/KATRIN JAKOBSDOTTIR: "REYKJAVIK" (Pub. date: August 17, 2023)
Reykjavik is definitely the most special release of the genre for 2013 as it bears the signature of both Ragnar Jónasson, the acclaimed Icelandic crime writer known for his mysteries set in the desolate Icelandic landscape, and that of the Icelandic prime minister, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, in an unprecedented endeavor that is bound to enthrall the Nordic noir enthusiasts. It seems that the country's long tradition in literature is epitomized in its most prominent political figure sparing the necessary time in order to write a crime novel along with her close friend, illustrating the significance of culture within the Icelandic status quo. The story is centered around a cold case, the vanishing of 15-year old Lara that took place 30 years earlier on the small island of Vidney. In the present, a journalist will start digging into the case and the plot begins to unfurl. Let's see if the prime minister's debut will vindicate our expectations.
10) ULF KVENSLER: "THE COUPLES TRIP" (Pub. date: June 6, 2023)
Ulf Kvensler, known for his involvement in several high-profile television series such as The Restaurant, Black Lake, and Molander, makes his first attempt at writing a novel with The Couples Trip which has been already shortlisted for the Swedish Academy of Crime Writers Award. The story is set in the mountaintops of northern Sweden where the annual hiking travel of the group of protagonists goes terribly wrong and people start to die. The wilderness of the landscape combined with a claustrophobic plotline make for a much anticipated debut by the celebrated Swedish screenwriter.