Winner of 2022 Petrona Award announced
The winner of the 2022 Petrona Award for the Best Scandinavian Crime Novel of the Year is:
FATAL ISLES by Maria Adolfsson, translated from the Swedish by Agnes Broomé and published by Zaffre. Maria Adolfsson will receive a trophy, and both the author and translator will receive a cash prize.
The judges’ statement on FATAL ISLES:
This captivating winning novel is the first in a proposed trilogy featuring the beautifully flawed protagonist Detective Inspector Karen Eiken Hornby, whose take on life and work make for a strong down-to-earth and modern heroine in the relicts of a man’s world.
Set in the fictional yet completely credible location of Doggerland, this three-islands archipelago in the North Sea, reflects Scandinavian, North European and British heritages. Doggerland is shaped and influenced by its geographical position; the atmospheric setting, akin to the wind- and history-swept Faroe and Shetland Islands, and Nordic climes, enhances the suspenseful and intriguing plot of a police procedural that combines detailed observations and thoughts on the human condition. A brutal murder sets in motion an investigation into layers of hidden secrets and of societal attitudes, and the interaction between the superbly portrayed characters creates a thrilling tension and believable environment.
Comments from the winning author, translator and publisher:
Maria Adolfsson (author):
I feel so honoured and want to send my warmest thanks to the Petrona Award jury. This appreciation for my work means a lot to me!
For me it is especially exciting that the British readers enjoy exploring Doggerland together with me. I’ve always been interested in what unites people in Scandinavia and the British Isles, how we are culturally linked, and what sets us apart. To me, Doggerland is – or at least might have been – the link between us. Or to quote Herman Melville: “It’s not down on any map; true places never are.”
Agnes Broomé (translator):
I am deeply honoured to receive the Petrona Award 2022. With such an impressive shortlist it is truly humbling to be chosen. I am grateful to the jury for their unswerving commitment to bringing Scandinavian crime literature to an English-speaking readership. My warmest thanks to everyone at Zaffre for their support along this journey and, above all, to Maria Adolfsson for introducing me to Detective Inspector Karen Eiken Hornby.
Many thanks to the jury for choosing Fatal Isles as the worthy winner of this year’s Petrona Award. It’s wonderful to see Maria’s brilliantly imaginative crime debut, expertly realised in English by Agnes Broomé, recognised for its excellence. DI Karen Eiken Hornby is a universally relatable character and Adolfsson’s vividly drawn island nation, Doggerland, is a perfectly picturesque place for the darkest deeds to occur. It is such a pleasure to publish this internationally bestselling series.
The Petrona team would like to thank the following: firstly, David Hicks, for his generous sponsorship of the Petrona Award; secondly the co-creators and original judges of the Award: Barry Forshaw, Dr. Kat Hall and Sarah Ward and thirdly, Adrian Muller for his support via the CrimeFest platform. The Petrona team are: Jackie Farrant (Raven Crime Reads), Miriam Owen (Nordic Noir blog), Ewa Sherman (me) Nordic Lighthouse, and Karen Meek Euro Crime website & blog.
FATAL ISLES is the tenth winner of the Petrona Award. Previous winners are Liza Marklund for LAST WILL, translated by Neil Smith; LINDA, AS IN THE LINDA MURDER by Leif G.W. Persson, also translated by Neil Smith; THE SILENCE OF THE SEA by Yrsa Sigurđardóttir, translated by Victoria Cribb; THE CAVEMAN by Jørn Lier Horst, translated by Anne Bruce; WHERE ROSES NEVER DIE by Gunnar Staalesen, translated by Don Bartlett; QUICKSAND by Malin Persson Giolito, translated by Rachel Willson-Broyles; THE KATHARINA CODE by Jørn Lier Horst, translated by Anne Bruce; LITTLE SIBERIA by Antti Tuomainen, translated by David Hackston, and TO COOK A BEAR by Mikael Niemi, translated by Deborah Bragan-Turner.