Nordic literature in focus at the Gothenburg Book Fair 2021

Today on the 24th of August, the book fair releases their program for this year, in which Nordic literature is one of the three core themes. On behalf of the Nordic Council of Ministers, the Nordic House in Reykjavik has curated a program with exciting encounters between Nordic authors to this year’s book fair.  

The annual book fair in Gothenburg is one of the major literary events and an important venue for encounters between Nordic literary professionals. This year the book fair has been transformed into a hybrid event, in which discussions will be recorded and broadcasted live on the platform Bokmässan Play. One of the main areas of focus this year is Nordic literature, where acknowledged and beloved authors are invited to discuss with exciting new voices in Nordic literature.

“This is the third time in the Book Fair’s almost 40-year history that Nordic literature is included as a theme! Nordic literature is very strong, read and loved in Sweden and many of the Nordic authors will be present, which feels very fun. Between 15 and 20 Nordic authors will participate in interviews and conversations, often together with Swedish authors, “says Oskar Ekström, program manager for the Book Fair.

Six Nordic authors engaging in compelling conversations

In the Nordic program of this year, six authors from the Nordic countries will engage in discussions that touch upon the particular focus areas of the Nordic Council of Ministers’ vision regarding Nordic cooperation.

  • Norwegian author Vigdis Hjorth and Finnish author Pajtm Statvoci are both nominated for Nordic Council Literature Prize of 2021; Hjort for her novel Er Mor Død and Statvoci for the novel Statvoci and Hjort will be discussing with Swedish author and cultural writer Amanda Svensson about identity and crisis, internal as well as external, in Nordic literature.


  • A socially sustainable Nordic region will be at the core in the discussion between the Danish author Hanne Højgaard Viemose, a nominee for the Nordic Council literature prize in 2020 for her novel HHV-FRSHWN – Dødsknaldet i Amazonas, and Icelandic Guðrún Eva Mínervudóttir, whose novel Aðferðir til að lifa af has been nominated for this year’s award. They will discuss how social sustainability, or its opposite, is portrayed in Nordic literature. The discussion will be monitored by Elisabeth Friis, senior lecturer in literature at Lund University and a member of the Danish Prize Committee for the Nordic Council Literature Prize.


  • Icelandic author Andri Snær Magnason, whose novel Um tímann og vatnið  is nominated to this year’s Nordic Council Literature Prize, will be discussing with Swedish author Gunnar D Hansson, who was a nominee for the same prize in 2018 with his novel Tapeshavet. Together with Magnason, Hansson will discuss a green Nordic region – How do Nordic authors write about and write in a green Nordic region? What role does literature play in a green future and what opportunities will unfold within the framework of literature? Icelandic culture journalist Halla Þórlaug Óskarsdóttir will be moderating the discussion, that will be recorded at the Nordic House in Reykjavík.

The Gothenburg Book Fair occurs between the 23rd-26th of September 2021.

Here you can buy a ticket to the event or to the online platform Bokmässan Play

Here you can find the program for the Gothenburg Book Fair

Read more about the Nordic Council Literature Prize