Reading lists

10 must-read Scandinavian novels

Whether you’re a literary fiction aficionado or a crime and thriller fanatic, here are 10 novels by Scandinavian authors that deserve to be on your bookshelf.

Jake Kerridge
A flat lay of five Vintage books by Scandinavian authors, against blue and grey textiles.

Scandinavian fiction covers a huge range. If you want to get your adrenaline pumping, you can’t do better than to pluck a ‘Nordic noir’ thriller off the shelf; but the writers of Northern Europe seem equally well-suited to quiet reflections on human nature.

Some of the books below are funny, some sad and some terrifying, but they all share an insistence on looking unflinchingly at life as it really is, and telling the truth about human relationships and feelings.

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