Deborah Bragan-Turner

E-mail: E-Mail

Web Links
Gothenburg Book Fair
Swedish Book Review is not responsible for the content of external websites.

2005 Supplement


Guest Editor: Neil Smith

2005 SupplementEditorial by Neil Smith

It has been clear for some time that Swedish Book Review should devote another of its annual Supplements to Finland-Swedish writing. The only difficulty was deciding which aspect of the literature this issue should focus upon. In the end, though, the wealth of high-quality fiction which has been produced within Finland’s Swedish-speaking community during the past fifteen years presented an overwhelming case. Insofar as the mythical “general reader” in the English-speaking world knows anything at all about Finland-Swedish literature, the chances are that he or she will have heard of the Modernist generation of poets, with Edith Södergran the name most likely to be recognized. But relatively little attention has been paid to Finland-Swedish novelists in anglophone countries. A handful of authors have had novels successfully translated – Monika Fagerholm with Wonderful Women by the Water, and Bo Carpelan with Axel are the most obvious examples. And this year Kjell Westö, whose novel Lang is shortly to be published in English translation by the UK’s foremost publisher of translated fiction, Harvill, will be joining this select band.

There is a rich assortment of literary delights to be found in the impressive lists of the Swedish-language publishing houses of Finland – principally, but by no means exclusively, Söderströms and Schildts. And, as Maria Antas shows in her introductory essay, the autumn of 2004 really did see the publication of an exceptional and extremely diverse collection of novels. We have had to take some very difficult decisions about which books to highlight in the current Supplement. We are very fortunate to have received an additional grant from FILI, the Finnish Literature Information Centre, which has enabled us to feature a greater variety of books and authors than we could otherwise have done, but the choice has still been difficult. In the end the decision was made to focus upon writers whose work has not been presented to readers of SBR for some time, such as Lars Sund and Ulla-Lena Lundberg. But we have also sought to feature a broad selection of the books published in the autumn of 2004, from the fictionalized biography of the founder of universal education in Finland, to the story of a Russian weightlifter who became a sumo wrestler in Japan. We also have an article on the literature of the Åland Islands, an interview with Fredrik Lång, and a selection of views on the current state of Finland-Swedish literature.

We owe a debt of gratitude to all of our contributors, and to friends old and new in the literary circles of Finland, without whose assistance the production of this Supplement would have been an arduous task.


  • Like a Child on a Literary Expedition
    Maria Antas
  • Collected Thoughts
  • from Soothing Favourites
    Kjell Westö (translated by Sarah Death)
  • from Colorado Avenue
    Lars Sund (translated by Laurie Thompson)
  • The Literature of the Åland Islands
    Benita Mattsson-Eklund
  • from Leo
    Ulla-Lena Lundberg (translated by Neil Smith)
  • Interview: Fredrik Lång
  • from The Russian Cousin
    Fredrik Lång (translated by Neil Smith)
  • Girls' Stories in New Clothes: An Introduction to the Work of Monika Fagerholm
    Lena Kåreland
  • from The American Girl
    Monika Fagerholm (translated by Sarah Death)
  • from Waiting for an Earthquake
    Zinaida Lindén (translated by Silvester Mazzarella)
  • from A Little Man in the North
    Anders Larsson (translated by Bettina Saarela)
  • from The Dandelion God
    Sabine Forsblom (translated by Susan Beard)
  • from The Dancing Priest
    Erik Wahlström (translated by Anna-Lisa & Martin Murrell)
  • from Goodnight, Tram Number Three
    Henrik Jansson (translated by Stuart Shelley)
  • from Candida
    Pirkko Lindberg (translated by David McDuff)
  • from The Smell of a Wartburg
    Mathias Nystrand (translated by Neil McWhirter)
  • from Scripts for Pornographic Films
    Peter Sandström (translated by Marie Tåqvist)
  • from Case Study
    Robert Åsbacka (translated by Henning Koch)
  • Further Reading

Current Issue: 2019:1&2

Issue 2019-12


Copyright © 2019 Swedish Book Review | Contact Details | Web Design by Intexta