I do generally try and keep an eye out for authors I like, or have read in English, who have/have had books published in Denmark in Danish.
I’m guessing the Danish market isn’t really large enough to make it economically viable for all but the big-selling, internationally-known authors. So, whilst you generally can’t move for people like Maeve Binchy, JK Rowling and/or Ken Follett, the authors I read a fair bit of, Ben Kane, Matt Hilton, even Lee Child, are notable by their absence. I follow quite a lot of authors on the old social media and those authors will generally say if/when their books are published in a language other than English. Danish isn’t mentioned. Ever. Polish, Hun-bloody-garian even, but Danish – nej tak!
To be honest, there are enough home-grown Danish and Scandinavian in general authors to keep the market satisfied. There are Danish author’s books everywhere, paperback, what passes for hardback, you name it. They’re pretty much all ‘krimi’ which if you’ve come across anything by Jussi Adler-Olesen or even Jo Nesbø (I know, he’s Norwegian) then you’ll be aware of what ballpark we’re in.
Danish books are expensive (partly thanks to the high cost of living generally, but also thanks to the 25% ‘VAT’ or sales tax, on everything. Everything). Danish imports of English (language) books are prohibitively expensive. For me, at least, to a Dane, used to paying what equates to £30 for a run of the mill new hardback, maybe less so.
Wilbur Smith is another you’ll find plenty of, translated into Danish. Which leads me to the picture for today. His (The Golden Lion is what it’s called in Danish, as above) last but one, one, I think, was written in collaboration with Giles Kristian, long-time fave of Speesh Reads. Something tells me I might have seen an actual Giles Kristian book, one of the Raven ones, in Danish, but I can’t think where. Actually, thinking about it, even his English versions are rare as rocking horse shit over here. So, I took the opportunity to snap these two pics, while trying not to look like I was casing the joint….
The first one is from a store called ‘Bog og Idé’ (Book(s) and ideas), the other is from a super/hyper-market called ‘Bilka’ (which is an acronym for something or other, but I can’t remember what). I can’t remember what they were asking for the Bog og Idé one, but the 299,95 tag above probably also covers the WS book – that’s nearly £30, to you, thank you very much. Which would piss you off rather more than somewhat if you dropped into Bilka for some groceries on your way home and noticed Bilka doing it for under a tenner. Both are ‘proper’ hardbacks, the ones with the loose cover, not the poxy Danish hardback, where they save money/maximise profit by printing on the actual ‘hard’ cover and covering it with something shiny. Cheap tat and they still want £30 for it. They won’t be within sniffing distance of being first editions, maybe seconds if you’re really lucky.
Anyway, I thought I’d combine a ‘author I’ve heard of published in Denmark’ post with a rant/explaination of why I don’t often buy books, of any sort, over here. And I think I’ve done that.