The best mystery novels with a Nordic flair

Who am I?

I started writing stories when I was a kid and could hardly spell, and have done so ever since. I’ve been fascinated by crime fiction since I started watching the TV adaptations of Poirot with my grandfather as a child and later as a teenager. Subsequently, I also started reading Agatha Christie and writing my own crime fiction books! As I got older, I started reading Nordic Noir books, and this genre heavily influenced my first two books.

I wrote...

Murder In Lima

By Mats Vederhus,

Book cover of Murder In Lima

What is my book about?

Kurt Hammer ends up in Lima, Peru, to escape his demons and put an end to his alcoholism. The holiday soon takes a sinister turn, though, when Kurt witnesses the brutal murder of an old friend.

Facing the most difficult case of his life, can Kurt find the killer—and avoid succumbing to his demons?

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The books I picked & why

The Da Vinci Code

By Dan Brown,

Book cover of The Da Vinci Code

Why did I love this book?

This one may be a bit of a cliché as far as thrillers go these days, but it’s one of the first thrillers I ever read, and Dan Brown has remained with me ever since. His prose may be lacking, but his plotting, characterization, and cliffhangers are next level! This is the perfect book for a cross-Atlantic flight or a lazy day at the beach!

By Dan Brown,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked The Da Vinci Code as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Harvard professor Robert Langdon receives an urgent late-night phone call while on business in Paris: the elderly curator of the Louvre has been brutally murdered inside the museum. Alongside the body, police have found a series of baffling codes.

As Langdon and a gifted French cryptologist, Sophie Neveu, begin to sort through the bizarre riddles, they are stunned to find a trail that leads to the works of Leonardo Da Vinci - and suggests the answer to a mystery that stretches deep into the vault of history.

Unless Langdon and Neveu can decipher the labyrinthine code and quickly assemble the…

Book cover of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Why did I love this book?

Like Dan Brown, Stieg Larsson had a flare for characterization and locations. This book will take you across Stockholm, and I’d suggest you go there after you’ve read it if you haven’t been already. Lisbeth Salander is one of the greatest leading women in modern fiction. Full stop. This is a must-read and manages to combine a clever mystery with the pacing of a thriller. 

By Stieg Larsson,

Why should I read it?

20 authors picked The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Forty years ago, Harriet Vanger disappeared from a family gathering on the island owned and inhabited by the powerful Vanger clan. Her body was never found, yet her uncle is convinced it was murder - and that the killer is a member of his own tightly-knit but dysfunctional family.

He employs disgraced financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist and the tattooed, truculent computer hacker Lisbeth Salander to investigate. When the pair link Harriet's disappearance to a number of grotesque murders from forty years ago, they begin to unravel a dark and appalling family history.

But the Vangers are a secretive clan, and…

The Snowman

By Jo Nesbo, Don Bartlett (translator),

Book cover of The Snowman

Why did I love this book?

Nesbø has become somewhat of a cliché in Norway, because of the staggering amount of books he sells. But this book showcases why he sells so many books—if you’re only going to read one book by Nesbø, read this one! It will take you across Oslo, and again has elements of both crime fiction/mystery and fiction. 

By Jo Nesbo, Don Bartlett (translator),

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Snowman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Soon the first snow will come

A young boy wakes to find his mother missing. Outside, he sees her favourite scarf - wrapped around the neck of a snowman.

And then he will appear again

Detective Harry Hole soon discovers that an alarming number of wives and mothers have gone missing over the years.

And when the snow is gone...

When a second woman disappears, Harry's worst suspicion is confirmed: a serial killer is operating on his home turf.

...he will have taken someone else


*Watch out for The Jealousy Man,…

Murder on the Orient Express

By Agatha Christie,

Book cover of Murder on the Orient Express

Why did I love this book?

One does not put together a list like this without mentioning the Queen of Crime. Christie is the one who got me into crime fiction, and this is probably her best book. The location, the characters, the murder mystery, the plot—this book has everything! Plus, it’s a relatively short read for the weekend.

By Agatha Christie,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked Murder on the Orient Express as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


“The murderer is with us—on the train now . . .”

Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Without a shred of doubt, one of his fellow passengers is the murderer.

Isolated by the storm, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer among a dozen of the dead man’s…

The Ice Princess

By Camilla Läckberg, Steven T. Murray (translator),

Book cover of The Ice Princess

Why did I love this book?

This is Läckberg’s debut novel, where she showcased her new twist on the mystery genre: a murder that happens in the present day with ties to historical events in the past. Läckberg is in many ways Sweden’s Agatha Christie, as these books are as set in the sleepy village of Fjällbacka in coastal Sweden. In later years, Läckberg has proven that she can also write thrillers, and these books have indications of that as the pacing is ramped up somewhat towards the end. But this is mostly a cozy mystery, written by one of the best in the business.

By Camilla Läckberg, Steven T. Murray (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Ice Princess as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“A top-notch thriller, one of the best of the genre” (Minneapolis Star Tribune) from international crime-writing sensation Camilla Läckberg tells the story of brutal murders in a small Swedish fishing village, and the shattering, decades-old secrets that precipitated them.

In this electrifying tale of suspense from an international crime-writing sensation, a grisly death exposes the dark heart of a Scandinavian seaside village. Erica Falck returns to her tiny, remote hometown of Fjällbacka, Sweden, after her parents’ deaths only to encounter another tragedy: the suicide of her childhood best friend, Alex. It’s Erica herself who finds Alex’s body—suspended in a bathtub…

5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in murder, murder mystery, and private investigators?

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And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

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