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Book Nook: Scandinavian Noir: In Pursuit of a Mystery, by Wendy Lesser

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"Scandinavian Noir: In Pursuit of a Mystery" by Wendy Lesser

Wendy Lesser loves a good mystery novel. She has an affinity for many of the crime novels that have been originating in the Scandinavian countries of Sweden, Denmark, and Norway. In her book "Scandinavian Noir: In Pursuit of a Mystery" Lesser reveals that a series of ten novels published during the 1960's and early 1970's by the Swedish writers Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö laid the foundation for what was to come afterward in that region. These two writers were the co-authors of the Martin Beck detective novels.

I'm quite fond of a good mystery novel and I was already familiar with several of the Scandinavian writers that Lesser covers in this informative book. When I discovered that the Martin Beck series has been so essential to her my curiosity was piqued. I had never read any of those novels!

In preparation for my interview with Wendy I tracked down all ten of the Beck books and on the very first page of their very first book I had already been hooked. I loved their style. In my interview with Wendy Lesser we discussed how Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö had been influenced by the work of Ed McBain and that was a fun topic because I was then able to play back a snippet of my 2001 interview with Ed for Wendy.

If you enjoy reading mystery novels you'll want to read "Scandinavian Noir." It is a treasure trove of information about a lot of writers and books that you might want to check out. The author's passion for this subject is impressive. I cannot remember the last time I read 11 books to prepare for an interview. I am certainly glad that I did! Oh, and now I'm reading my third book by just Per Wahlöö. Those books are good, too.

The Book Nook on WYSO is presented by the Greene County Public Library with additional support from Washington-Centerville Public Library, Clark County Public Library, Dayton Metro Library, and Wright Memorial Public Library.

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Vick Mickunas introduced the Book Nook author interview program for WYSO in 1994. Over the years he has produced more than 1500 interviews with writers, musicians, poets, politicians, and celebrities. Listen to the Book Nook with Vick Mickunas for intimate conversations about books with the writers who create them.  Vick Mickunas reviews books for the Dayton Daily News and the Springfield News Sun.