Photo: Ellen Wettmark/Ann Nilsen.

Fantasy, Death and Power: A New Swedish Fiction Salon

The shadowy basement of the Ace Hotel in London recently played host to a night of Swedish literature.

A curious group of Londoners were treated to readings from the newly translated novels of Malte Persson, Cilla Nauman and Frida Nilsson, published by Readux Books. The evening concluded with a conversation between the three authors and Saskia Vogel, translator, member of SELTA (the Swedish-English Literary Translators’ Association) and the organiser of the event, on the topic of the obstacles and opportunities inherent in translation. The readings were performed by the Liars’ League, an acclaimed group of professional actors who under the header “”Writers write. Actors read. Audience listens. Everybody wins” do readings of new fiction at a pub in central London every month.

Good translators are crucial to the dissemination of Swedish literature abroad. That became abundantly clear at the translation workshop on children’s and young adult literature that took place the next day. Malte Persson and Cilla Nauman, whose short-stories were the focal point the night before, have also written books for young people. They participated in the seminar alongside Swedish colleagues Annelis Johansson, Per Gustavsson and Frida Nilsson, as well as a large group of Swedish-English translators.

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