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An evening with Scandinavian authors discussing their books

10 February 2021
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Chaired by Lone Theils, we welcome, Eva Björg Ægisdóttir, Heidi Amsinck, Stefan Ahnhem, Dorthe Nors, Agnete Friis and Yrsa Sigurdardottir.

10 February 2021
19:00 – 20:00
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Free to attend

On Wednesday 10 February from 7-8pm, including a 15mins Q&A session: Barnet Libraries presents: An evening with Scandinavian authors discussing their books.

The panel will be chaired by Lone Theils. Joining Lone is Eva Björg Ægisdóttir, Heidi Amsinck, Stefan Ahnhem, Dorthe Nors, Agnete Friis and Yrsa Sigurdardottir.

This is a free virtual author event in partnership with Danish-UK Association (DKUK). 

Nearer the time, we will email you the details to join the event.

  • Lone Theils
  • Eva Björg Ægisdóttir
  • Heidi Amsinck
  • Stefan Ahnhem
  • Dorthe Nors
  • Agnete Friis
  • Yrsa Sigurdardottir

Lone Theils (Chairperson) is a former London-correspondent for national Danish newspapers Berlingske Tidende and Politiken. Her debut novel Fatal Crossing (2015) featuring the journalist Nora Sand based in London, has been sold in 16 countries and she now is a full time author. In 2017 she was nominated for the Danish Martha Awards.

Eva Björg Ægisdóttir lives in Akranes, a small town about half an hour drive from Reykjavík which is the scene for her novel.

Ever since she was a child she has been fascinated with books. She soon started writing, although at first it was mostly diaries and half-finished stories. As a teenager she won a short story contest and after that she was determined to become a writer in the future.

After moving back to Iceland in 2015, she decided to finally start writing her first novel. In order to have time to write, she got a job as a flight attendant and in nine months she finished the first draft of her novel.

In 2018, Eva was the recipient of the Blackbird Award, a crime-writing prize hosted by prolific Iceland authors Yrsa Sigurdardóttir and Ragnar Jónasson, for her debut novel Marrid Í Stiganum (The Creak on the Stairs), which was published in October 2020 by Orenda Books. The Creak on the Stairs won the Storytel Awards for best audiobook in Iceland It was also shortlisted for the Amazon Publishing readers award, for Best Debut Novel and Best Independent Voice.

Eva’s second novel, Girls who Lie, will be published in 2021 by Orenda Books.

Heidi Amsinck is a writer and journalist born in Copenhagen, spent many years covering Britain for the Danish press, including a spell as London Correspondent for the broadsheet daily Jyllands-Posten. She has written numerous short stories for radio, including the three-story sets Danish Noir, Copenhagen Confidential and Copenhagen Curios, all produced by Sweet Talk for BBC Radio 4.

A graduate of the MA in Creative Writing at Birkbeck, University of London, Heidi lives in London. She was previously shortlisted for the VS Pritchett Memorial Prize. Last Train to Helsingør is her first published collection of stories.

Her crime novel My Name is Jensen, set in Copenhagen, will be published in August 2021.

Stefan Ahnhem is one of the most successful new voices to appear on the Scandinavian crime fiction scene. Ahnhem is a screenwriter with over two decades of experience. Since his debut in 2014 with Victim Without a Face, Ahnhem has built an authorship where the suspense and atmosphere of Nordic Noir is combined with the cinematic qualities of screenwriting.

Currently, five novels have been published from the international bestselling and award-winning Fabian Risk series.

Dorthe Nors was born in 1970 and studied literature at the University of Aarhus. She is one of the most original voices in contemporary Danish literature. Her short stories have appeared in numerous international publications including the Boston Review and Harper’s, and she is the first Danish writer ever to have a short story published in the New Yorker.

Nors has published several works of fiction, including the novella Minna Needs Rehearsal Space, the novel Mirror, Shoulder, Signal – shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize – and a collection of stories, Karate Chop, all published by Pushkin Press. Karate Chop won the prestigious P. O. Enquist Literary Prize in 2014.

She lives in rural Jutland, Denmark.

About Wild Swims:

This is a collection resplendent with longing. In these pages, people meet without actually connecting, travellers set off but never seem to find home. We encounter them on the fjords of Norway, in the bustle of Los Angeles, and among the lights of Copenhagen. Outsiders yearn to be on the inside, insiders are desperate to be free. A writer befriends an ex-lover’s mother. An elderly man offers his body to aging women. A woman’s childhood memories of wild swimming draw her back to the water.

In prose that is both elegantly spare and saturated with emotion, Dorthe Nors shines a light into forgotten corners and conjures darkness where it’s least expected. Her characteristic sharpness and sense of humour are ever-present, catching us when the melancholy threatens to come too close. Love, cruelty, friendship and loneliness are all here, in these stories that brim with life.

Agnete Friis is a Danish writer, best known for co-authoring the bestselling crime fiction series featuring Red Cross nurse Nina Borg. Friis was born in Jutland, Denmark, and grew up in the countryside as the daughter of a geology professor and a graphic designer. She was a middle child, with an older sister and a younger brother. Being a somewhat nerdy kid, her hobbies were reading British crime fiction and birdwatching in the wintertime.

She had pet turtles, fish, walking stick bugs, chickens, one dog, seven cats, mice she caught in the barn, a pony and frogs she rescued from a nearby frozen pond. Through most of her teenage years, Friis thought she would pursue a career as a biologist, but she also developed a keen interest in writing, and after high school she eventually decided to study political science and journalism to pursue that dream.

She worked as a news reporter and later as a press agent before starting to write fiction. In 2007 she met Lene Kaaberbøl, an established bestselling author, and the two of them started a creative cooperation in crime fiction, resulting in the New York Times bestseller The Boy in the Suitcase, the first instalment in a series of four books, which has sold to more than 30 countries.

Both in her own work and her cooperation with Lene Kaaberbøl, Agnete Friis engages with social and political issues, such as the challenges of the current refugee crisis in Europe. But in her own words, her aim is not political and her fiction does not offer any easy answers.

Agnete Friis lives in Copenhagen with her husband of 24 years, three children and a hopelessly small dog.

Agnete’s latest novels translated into English, ‘What my Body Remembers and ‘The Summer of Ellen’ are standalones and can best be described as a domestic noir, placing her characters in rural Denmark, where she herself grew up.

Yrsa Sigurdardottir is an Icelandic author. She began her writing career by writing children’s books. These were five in all and during this period she received the Icelandic Children’s book award as well as the Icelandic IBBY prize for children’s literature.

Yrsa is however best known for her contribution to crime fiction. She is the author of the Þóra series, crime novels featuring lawyer Thora Guðmundsdóttir, as well as the more recent series featuring policeman Huldar and child psychologist Freyja.

Yrsa’s crime novels have been successful internationally and have been translated to 35 languages. Two of her novels have been selected by the Sunday Times as the crime novel of the year. In addition, Yrsa has won several prizes for her crime fiction novels, including winning the Icelandic Crime Novel Award (Blóðdropinn) twice, the Petrona award for best Scandinavian Crime fiction and the Palle Rosinkranz prize in Denmark in 2017 for best crime novel.

In addition to writing for children and crime fiction, Yrsa has written three standalone horror novels. A movie based on her first horror novel, I Remember You, premiered in May 2017 and adaptation for the big screen has commenced for the latter, KULDI.

The Thora series is furthermore being adapted for English language television.

Yrsa is a civil engineer by trade and still works as such in her native Iceland.