Give me five

Norwegian crime novels make for exciting Easter reading!

Easter crime

Washington, D.C.

Crime novelists in Norway continue to produce works that are worthy of attention and are excellent choices for Easter reading. Let’s take a look at the latest works by some of the big names. God påske!

Thomas Enger Easter crime

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Thomas Enger (born 1973).

Thomas Enger

Thomas Enger is the author of the popular Investigative Journalist Henning Juul series, but Inborn (2019), his latest crime novel, is a chilling stand-alone. A 17-year-old boy in a small Norwegian town is in the courtroom charged with killing two students in his high school. But he is also on trial in the social media. He begins to have suspicions about people around him and no longer knows whom he can trust—while many think he is the one who cannot be trusted.

Anne Holt Easter Crime

Ole Gunnar Onsjøen / NTB scanpix
Anne Holt (born 1958).

Anne Holt

Dust and Ashes (2018) is the 10th and final book in Anne Holt’s Hanne Wilhelmsen series. A man is accused of murdering both his daughter and his wife. Is he guilty? Detective Henrik Holme tries to discover the truth with the unwilling help of Wilhelmsen, his former mentor.

Kjell Ola Dahl Easter Crime

Photo: Fredrik Varfjell /NTB scanpix
Kjell Ola Dahl (born 1958).

Kjell Ola Dahl

Kjell Ola Dahl has a new book, Sister, coming out in October 2020, but his latest published book is The Ice Swimmer (2018). It is almost Christmas when a man’s body is discovered in the cold waters of Oslo Harbor. Detective Lena Stigersand must solve the case, but it becomes complicated when she finds that a politician and the Norwegian security services might be involved.    

Karin Fossum

Photo: Cornelius Poppe / NTB scanpix
Karin Fossum (born 1954).

Karin Fossum

Karin Fossum’s The Whisperer (2019) is the latest in her Inspector Konrad Sejer series. The quiet, self-effacing Ragna Reigel is in prison for murder but is she the murderer or the victim? The story goes back and forth between the months preceding the murder and Sejer’s patient interrogation of Ragna in prison.

Jo Nesbø

Photo: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix
Jo Nesbø (born 1960).

Jo Nesbø

Jo Nesbø is, of course, the first writer who comes to mind. He remains Norway’s “King of Crime.” His most recent book is Knife (2019), another in his Inspector Harry Hole series. Svein Finne, the first killer Harry ever sent to prison, is now free and out to get him. Harry must watch his back. Will Harry survive or will this be the end of the Harry Hole series?



This article originally appeared in the April 3, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American.

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Christine Foster Meloni

Christine Foster Meloni is professor emerita at The George Washington University. She has degrees in Italian literature, linguistics, and international education. She was born in Minneapolis and currently lives in Washington, D.C. She values her Norwegian heritage.