Håkan Nesser (born 21 February 1950 in Kumla, Närke) is a Swedish author and teacher who has written a number of successful novels, mostly crime fiction. He has won Best Swedish Crime Novel Award three times, and his novel Carambole won the Glass Key award in 2000. His books have been translated from Swedish into numerous languages.
Håkan Nesser was born on 21 February 1950, and grew up in Kumla, Örebro County; he has lived most of his adult life in Uppsala. His first novel was published in 1988, but he worked as a teacher until 1998 when he became a full-time author. In August 2006, Håkan Nesser and his wife Elke (a psychiatrist) moved to Greenwich Village in New York. A few years later the couple packed their bags and moved to London since it was easier for his wife to find work there.
Characters and themes
A recurring main character is called Van Veeteren, a detective in the early novels and later the owner of an antique books shop. These books play out in a fictitious city called Maardam, said to be located in northern Europe in a country which is never named but resembles Sweden, the Netherlands, Poland and Germany. The names however are mostly Dutch.
With his 2006 crime novel Människa utan hund (Human without Dog) Nesser introduced a new main character, Inspector Gunnar Barbarotti, a Swedish police inspector of Italian descent. He has remained the main protagonist in Nesser's crime books since then. Barbarotti is a more upbeat character than Van Veeteren and the books are firmly set in Sweden, although the town of Kymlinge is fictitious and named after an "abandoned tube station" in Stockholm.
Nesser explained in an 2009 interview that he has two books left in him with Inspector Barbarotti, a novel set in London and a final masterpiece.
Inspector Van Veeteren
- 1993 – Det grovmaskiga nätet; English translation: The Mind's Eye, 2008
- 1994 – Borkmanns punkt; English translation: Borkmann's Point, 2006
- 1995 – Återkomsten; English translation: The Return, 2007
- 1996 – Kvinna med födelsemärke; English translation: Woman with Birthmark, 2009
- 1997 – Kommissarien och tystnaden: English translation: The Inspector and Silence, 2010
- 1998 – Münsters fall: English translation: The Unlucky Lottery, 2011 (Münster's Case, USA, 2012)
- 1999 – Carambole; English translation: Hour of the Wolf, 2012
- 2000 – Ewa Morenos fall English translation: The Weeping Girl, 2013
- 2001 – Svalan, katten, rosen, döden English translation: The Strangler's Honeymoon, 2013
- 2003 – Fallet G; English translation: The G File, 2014
- 2006 – Människa utan hund
- 2007 – En helt annan historia
- 2008 – Berättelse om herr Roos
- 2010 – De ensamma
- 2012 – Styckerskan från Lilla Burma
- 1988 – Koreografen
- 1996 – Barins triangel
- 1998 – Kim Novak badade aldrig i Genesarets sjö
- 1999 – Flugan och evigheten
- 2002 – Och Piccadilly Circus ligger inte i Kumla
- 2002 – Kära Agnes!
- 2004 – Skuggorna och regnet
- 2005 – Från doktor Klimkes horisont
- 2009 – Maskarna på Carmine Street
- 2011 – Himmel över London
- 2014 – Levande och döda I Winsford; English translation: The Living and the Dead in Winsford (2015)
- Kim Novak Never Swam in Genesaret's Lake (Kim Novak badade aldrig i Genesarets sjö) 2005
- Van Veeteren series
- Det grovmaskiga nätet (2000, TV)
- Återkomsten (2001)
- Kvinna med födelsemärke (2001, TV)
- Münsters fall (2005)
- Carambole (2005)
- Borkmanns punkt (2005)
- Moreno och tystnaden (2006)
- Svalan, katten, rosen, döden (2006)
- Fallet G (2006)
- 1994 – Best Swedish Crime Novel Award for Borkmanns punkt
- 1996 – Best Swedish Crime Novel Award for Kvinna med födelsemärke
- 2000 – Glass Key award for Carambole
- 2007 – Best Swedish Crime Novel Award for En helt annan historia