Danish Books Abroad

Carsten Jensen's latest novel, Den første Sten (The First Stone), about the war in Afghanistan, was exceptionally well received by reviewers in Denmark


Recently sold fiction

The rights to Afgrunden (The Abyss), by bestselling, award-winning author Kim Leine have been sold to France, the Dutch have snapped up Logbog fra et livsforlis (Logbook from a Shipwrecked Life), the latest novel by Erik Valeur and Hvor intet bryder vinden (Where Nothing Breaks the Wind) by Leonora Christina Skov, whilst En ny tid (A Changer of Time), the latest offering from Ida Jensen have been sold to the USA.

Carsten Jensen is another big name in Danish literature destined to do well abroad. His latest novel, Den første Sten (The First Stone), about the war in Afghanistan, was exceptionally well received by reviewers in Denmark, and was sold to Germany, Norway and Sweden before it was even published. A range of other international publishers have expressed interest and submitted offers.  His latest novel Vi de druknede (We, the Drowned), has sold more than 500,000 copies worldwide. Read a sample translation of The First Stone here.

Read more about Erik Valeur, Ida Jessen and Carsten Jensen in the latest edition of Danish Literary Magazine and more about Kim Leine in the previous issue of Danish Literary Magazine

Titles attracting interest from abroad

Agents and publishers report interest in:

Peter Fogtdal’s  Det egyptiske hjerte (The Egyptian Heart): One reviewer wrote: I’m totally hooked. is one of the most charming, humorous, and clever books I’ve had in my hand for a long time.

Also worth keeping an eye on are Italiensvej (Italiensvej) by Anne Grue which has sold over 20,000 copies in Denmark, and Anne Lise Marstrand-Jørgensen’s novel Dronningen af Saba og Kong Salomon(The Queen of Sheba and King Solomon). Both received excellent reviews in Denmark. Read a sample translation of The Queen of Seba and King Solomon here. And read more about The Queen of Sheba and King Solomon in the most recent edition of Danish Literary Magazine.

Non fiction

Danish non-fiction is also making waves: Puk Damsgård’s Ser du månen, Daniel (Do You See the Moon, Daniel), the story of ISIS taking a young Danish photographer hostage, has attracted international attention.

So too has the agenda-setting bestseller Stå fast (Stand Your Ground) by Svend Brinkmann,  a no-holds-barred yet humorous critique of the self-help industry. It has been a regular fixture on the bestseller lists since its publication in 2014, and looks set to continue its triumphal progress around the world. Read more about Svend Brinkmann in the previous edition of Danish Literary Magazine


Danish crime novels have been making their mark on the world map for years. This season looks set to be no exception, with plenty of good news for fans of the genre. Michael Katz Krefeld continues to sell worldwide. His latest book Sekten (The Sect) has just been published in Denmark. Another hot name in crime is Steffen Jacobsen, whose latest book is called Et bjerg af løgne (A Mountain of Lies). His previous novels Gengældelsen (Retribution) and Trofæ (Trophy) are also still selling well abroad. 

Søren and Lotte Hammer, the brother-and-sister crime-writing team, are no strangers to international success either. Their latest offering, Elskede Heidi (Beloved Heidi), has just been sold to France.

And new name worth looking out for is Lone Theils  whose debut novel Pigerne fra Englandsbåden (The Girls from the Ferry to England) looks set to herald her international breakthrough.

Read more about the latest Danish crime novels in Danish Literary Magazine 

Film adaptations

Several Danish books are set for the silver screen, so you will have to hurry up and grab a copy of the printed versions if you want to read them first.

Simple living. Kamp og kunst fra en campingvogn (Simple Living: Fighting and Art from a Caravan) by Nadia Plesner  describes the author’s struggle for artistic freedom against a formidable opponent: the Louis Vuitton fashion house.

Hassan Preisler’s  Brun mands byrde (Brown Man’s Burden), which combines a free and humorous style with themes of integration and multiculturalism, took Danish reviewers by storm and will hit the big screen soon.

The latest novel by multi award-winner Thomas Rydahl, Eremitten (The Hermit), which has been sold to more than ten countries, is another cinema treat in the making. A Spanish film company has recently purchased the film rights to the book. 

Further information

Danish Arts Foundation's Committee for Literary Project Funding


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