My last update on my progress on reading the books eligible for the International Dagger for 2011 was at the end of October last year. To qualify, books have to be translated, and published in the UK between May 2010 and June 2011. Karen continuously updates her essential Euro Crime blog post of eligible titles.
These are the books on the list that I had read when I wrote my last post on the subject (links go to my reviews):
The Wings of the Sphinx by Andrea Camilleri, translated by Stephen Sartarelli (Italy)
Needle in a Haystack by Ernesto Mallo, translated by Jethro Soutar (Argentina)
Bad Intentions by Karin Fossum, translated by Charlotte Barslund (Norway)
The Inspector and Silence by Hakan Nesser, translated by Laurie Thompson (Sweden)
Red Wolf by Liza Marklund, translated by Neil Smith (Sweden)
River of Shadows by Valerio Varesi, translated by Joseph Farrell (Italy)
Ashes to Dust by Yrsa Sigurdardottir, translated by Philip Roughton (Iceland)
Silence by Jan Costin Wagner, translated by Anthea Bell (German, setting Finland)
Three Seconds by Roslund-Hellstrom, translated by Kari Dickson (Sweden)
Bunker by Andrea Maria Shenckel, translated by Anthea Bell (Germany)
Operation Napoleon by Arnaldur Indridason, translated by Victoria Cribb (Iceland).
Since then I have read:
1222 by Anne Holt, translated by Marlaine Delargy (Norway)
Frozen Moment by Camilla Ceder (Sweden, Euro Crime review submitted)
Shadow Sister by Simone van der Vlugt (The Netherlands, Euro Crime review submitted)
Between Summer’s Longing and Winter’s End by Leif G W Persson (not reviewed as I did not enjoy it much).
And I have hurled away from me into the electronic sink after getting as far as chapter 3:
The Postcard Killers by Liza Marklund and A. N. Other (may not in any event be eligible, depending on whether it was first written in Swedish or something approximating to English)
I suppose I must by now have read enough titles to think about which, if any, are my front-runners. So far, there are no real stand-outs in the list. Most of the books I’ve read are very good, solid novels, but I would not say that any of them have that extra factor that makes them a potential crime fiction classic (as I am sure novels by Johan Theorin, last year’s winner, will be, for example). My own personal favourites to date (in no special order) are Red Wolf, Frozen Moment and Needle in a Haystack, though there is not much in it. There are still some enticing prospects in the titles that have not yet been published, and the glowing reviews so far of The Leopard make me think it is likely to be a strong contender.
Remaining to read –
Splinter by Sebastian Fitzek (Germany, in my Kindle e-reader via the Amazon £1 per-download Christmas promotion)
The Leopard by Jo Nesbo (Norway, in my Kindle e-reader via Amazon’s e-book of the week promotion)
Villain by Shuichi Yoshida (Japan, not yet purchased)
And not yet published in the UK but which I will or may read:
Basic Shareholder by Petros Markaris
Rendezvous by Esther Verhoef
The Quarry by Johan Theorin (publication date moved so may no longer be eligible for 2011)
The Troubled Man by Henning Mankell
Death on a Galician Shore by Domingo Villar
The Hypnotist by Lars Kepler
The Gallows Bird by Camilla Lackberg
Bandit Love by Massimo Carlotto
Summertime by Mari Jungstedt
Blood Sisters by Alessandro Perissinotto
An Uncertain Place by Fred Vargas
Inquisition by Alfredo Carlitto
Mercy by Jussi Adler-Olsen
A Short Cut to Paradise by Teresa Solana (updated, thanks to Simon Clarke for pointing out this omission!)
Plus quite a few others, most of which I shan’t read partly for time reasons and partly as they are magical and/or religious-historical, are about serial killers, are said to contain graphic violence, and the like.