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Reflections of a working writer and reader

 

 

Reading Crime Novels in Norway

According to an article in AFP, the entire Nation reads crime novels over the Easter period. I’m not sure that it’s true, but it sounds like fun.

Bookstore displays are full of detective novels, television and radio stations run crime serials and newspapers publish special literary supplements, all catering to Norwegians’ thirst for thrills.

Even the backs of milk cartons offer mysteries that need solving.

“Along with chocolate bars and oranges, the crime novel has its special place in Norwegians’ backpacks as they head off for their Easter holiday,” said journalist Nils Nordberg, a specialist on the subject.

In order to be properly devoured, the Easter crime novel should be read in the glow of a cozy fireplace at a secluded cabin that one can only get to by donning a pair of skis.

“The setting is ideal. You’re in the mountains, far from everything. Outside, it’s snowing and windy. What could be better than a few chills running down your spine,” said Nordberg.

Thanks to Sand Storm for the lead to this one.

15 Responses to “Reading Crime Novels in Norway”

  1. Hi John,

    What a gem of a find. 🙂
    A scoop for any nation besides Norway.

    I’ve noticed too that over the Christmas season, good detective stories and a number of translated thrillers from countries like France pop out from nowhere in Hatchards, London. They’re offered as special Christmas buys.

    jb says: Yes, Susan. Something to be encouraged.

  2. Steve Clackson says:

    Thanks for the mention John. I thought the article was very interesting.

    jb says: Hi Steve. Thank you.

  3. anne says:

    This says something wonderful about Norway!

    My father was quite the intellectual and he denigrated much non-literary fiction (not necessarily fairly, I would maintain), But he read three or four detective novels each week.

    jb says: I can never understand how someone can read more than one book a week. I read really slowly, a novel often takes me three or four weeks to get through.

  4. Bhaswati says:

    What an intelligent way to spend holidays. Smart Norwegians. Thanks for the link to the other blog, John. Neat article.

    jb says: Hi Bhaswati. It’s Easter here now and I think about them from time to time, up there in the mountains, in suspense.

  5. Tom says:

    I’m up in the Norwegian mountains. After a breakfast with as you said, a milk carton with a “who done it” on the side, we took a long trip up in the mountains. Chocolate & waffles were on offer at a cottage high high up. Back home we’ll soon be doing the same as we did last night. Lighting the fire, filling the wine glasses & turning on the radio to listen to part 2 of the Easter crime story:-).

    jb says: Hi Tom, glad we got through to someone. Must be pretty good technology over there. Can I come join you?

  6. anne says:

    John, that reminds me of something I wanted to ask that has nothing to do with Norwegian mysteries – just the mystery of technology. What commenting software do you use that (brilliantly) puts your responses as responses rather than separate comments?? I am jealous and want to use it!

  7. john baker says:

    Anne,
    I don’t use any separate commenting software. I just use WordPress because it seems, unlike a lot of other blogging programs, to let me do more or less whatever I want.

  8. w says:

    I love this idea. I wonder if there’s a mystery novel out there that takes advantage of this “holiday”… a murder/crime occurring during the Easter-crime-noveling-reading period, with clues scattered throughout some or all of the puzzles. Love it.

    And love, too, your commenting inside the responses. If you don’t mind, I’m going to try that out myself!

    jb says: OK, Norwegian readers. There’s a question for you. Does this novel exist . . .yet?

  9. Robin says:

    How wonderful! I love this idea. Maybe I should move!

    jb says: It’s a great country, Robin.

  10. Thomas says:

    Well then you’ll have to get your skis on. That is the only way to get around up here. Then when you build up a bit of pace and point the skis in the wrong direction you’ll slide all the way down to the valley. And as you know, you never meet nice people down there. That’s when the real “who done it” get going.
    By the way I tried to add a comment when I was online with my mobile phone and I click submit but I always get an error message. Try for yourself.

    jb says: OK, I’ll try.

  11. john says:

    commenting on my own blog via mobile phone.

    jb says: Sorry, Tom. Either your phone’s on the blink or you need a new provider. Or, perhaps you’re just too high up that mountain.

  12. Austin Catering Company says:

    Well then you’ll have to get your skis on. That is the only way to get around up here. Then when you build up a bit of pace and point the skis in the wrong direction you’ll slide all the way down to the valley. And as you know, you never meet nice people down there. That’s when the real “who done it” get going.

  13. Glow Glasses says:

    It sounds really wonderful…Reading a horror story on a summer night with chocolates and a lot of fun stuff. I would definitely like to try it out.

  14. Michiel says:

    Sounds idyllic for sure however there are quite possible a lot of things that SHOULD be done in the glow of a cozy fireplace at a secluded cabin that one can only get to by donning a pair of skis – reading is definitely one of them. Actually when you read this you can almost picture the fire and the almost burning feeling in your toes with your woolly socks on.

    It makes me nostalgic for a bit of colder weather, never been to Norway perhaps it is time!!!

    One thing I haven’t seen before is mysteries on the back of milk cartons but perhaps I never looked!
    Cheers anyway
    Rgds
    M

    jb says: Hi Michiel. Good to see you here. And the trip to Norway won’t disappoint.

  15. Raymond J. says:

    Well, you’re right somehow. I am norwegian myself. And we certainly have some weird traditions here, such as the easter crime stuff. But I don’t really thing the vast majority of the people here are very hung up in these traditions. It’s not something I think too much about when it occurs.