AudioFile - Find your next great audiobook
Get our Newsletter
blog post image
Warming Up to Winter with Nordic Noir

E Quint on LundegatanAs I look up into the gray skies of Brooklyn and know that the winter sun, which has barely shown its face for days, will be disappearing behind the skyscrapers of Manhattan in an instant, I feel an affinity with the bleak and coffee-filled settings of Nordic Noir.

Many of us were introduced to the genre by Stieg Larsson’s THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATOO and David Largercrantz’s follow-ups, the latest one being THE GIRL WHO TAKES AN EYE FOR AN EYE, all narrated by the award-winning Simon Vance. Having listened to all of the audiobooks numerous times, I am really looking forward to the next one, THE GIRL WHO LIVED TWICE, which is scheduled for release in August 2019. I actually went super fangirl on a recent trip to Stockholm and searched for Lisbeth Salander. At least I found the street where she grew up—Lundegarten. Ironically, I got to experience Sweden during the heat of summer with beautiful blue skies when the sun never sets.

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
The Girl Who Takes An Eye For An Eye

Nordic noir goes way back before Larsson’s series. Some attribute its start to writing partners Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö, who introduced us to Detective Martin Beck in the first audiobook in the series, ROSEANNA, narrated by Tom Weiner. These police procedurals take place in Sweden in the 1960s and ’70s.

An Event in AutumnThe list of Swedish Noir audiobooks is lengthy and includes many interesting, serious, and complex stories and protagonists, including Henning Mankell’s Inspector Kurt Wallander. The final book in the Wallander series, AN EVENT IN AUTUMN, is narrated by Simon Vance, while narrator Dick Hill voices Wallander in the earlier books.

It’s hard to believe that this is the same Sweden that has given us ABBA and IKEA.

But it’s not all about Sweden. Nordic Noir covers Finland, Denmark, Norway, and Iceland, too.

The Thirst
The Lost Woman

Norway is well represented by Jo Nesbø and his tough, relentless, and damaged, Harry Hole. In the most recent, the 11th audiobook in the series, THE THIRST, John Lee provides the narration to this dark and violent tale.

For Denmark, I want to make note of Sara Blaedel, considered Denmark’s Queen of Crime Fiction. Her series features Louise Rick, Danish detective in charge of the Special Search Agency. I had the opportunity to review THE LOST WOMAN, narrated by Christine Lakin, who has become the voice of Louise Rick. As with many of the Nordic Noir books, the solving of crimes is interwoven with serious social themes—in this case, assisted suicide.

The Shadow DistrictAnd before we leave Nordic Noir, we must do a stopover in Iceland. A BBC story reveals that: This island nation of just over 300,000 people has more writers, more books published and more books read, per head, than anywhere else in the world. And many of these Icelanders are writing crime novels. Arnaldur Indridason, Iceland’s best-selling crime writer, has given us the Detective Erlendur crime series, as well as, the recent THE SHADOW DISTRICT, read by George Guidall.

So much dark crime to cozy up with on a cold winter night. A perfect way to spend the holidays for us crime audiofiles! Best wishes for the New Year!

Share This
More From Audiofile
blog post image
Off to the City of Angels and the Devil in a Blue Dress
Yes, this blog is being posted the week before Christmas, but I'm going to let my fellow bloggers call out the holiday, as Caitlin Augusta does in her Countdown to the Holidays
blog post image
Best Mystery Audiobooks of 2018
Congratulations to the authors and narrators of the 2018 Best Audiobooks in the Mystery category. The competition is tough—AudioFile's editors start with 2000 audiobooks in 9
blog post image
Stretching Out of My Listening Comfort Zone
One of the things I love about being a reviewer for AudioFile Magazine is the opportunity to listen to new books I would not have chosen on my own. Frankly, I frequently find
blog post image
An Audiobook Mystery Both Dark and Light: Private Lies
AudioFile is Behind the Mic again with narrator Amy Landon, who shares what she loved about narrating PRIVATE LIES, a hilarious noir mystery with sparkling dialogue and an
The latest audiobook reviews, right in your inbox.

Get our FREE Newsletter and discover a world of audiobooks.

envelope

AudioFile Newsletter

Let us recommend your next great audiobook!

No algorithms here!
We pick great audiobooks for you.
Sign up for our free newsletter with audiobook love from AudioFile editors.

If you are already with us, thank you! Just click X above.

×

Thank you for signing up.

×

Thanks!

Thank you for contacting us!

Our group will review and follow up within 72 hours.
Thanks for your interest!

Back Home ×