Forty Icelandic Titles in English Translation published in UK and USA

31. October, 2019

Icelandic literature is fast gaining a world-wide following as can be seen by the fact that translations into foreign languages has tripled over the past decade. 

Icelandic literature is fast gaining a world-wide following as can be seen by the fact that translations into foreign languages has tripled over the past decade with around fifty languages in the running and reaching new readers across the globe. 

Around forty Icelandic titles have recently been translated into English, or will be soon, and published in the UK and USA. Here are some examples of fiction, crime fiction, poetry, children & YA books and non-fiction by well known Icelandic authors, as well as new authors on the literary scene. 

Literary fiction

  • Or-a-enskuUngfrú Ísland (E. Miss Iceland) & Ör (E. Hotel Silence) by Auður Ava Ólafsdóttir, translated by Brian FitzGibbon. Publishers: Pushkin Press in the UK and Grove Atlantic in USA.
  • CoDex 1962 by Sjón translated by Victoria Cribb and published by Sceptre in the UK and FSG in USA.
  • Sumarljos-og-svo-kemur-nottin-a-enskuSumarljós og svo kemur nóttin (E. Summer Light, and Then Comes the Night) & Eitthvað á stærð við alheiminn (E. About the Size of the Universe) by Jón Kalman Stefánsson translated by Philip Roughton. Publisher: Quercus Books/MacLehose Press.
  • Stormfuglar (E. Stormbirds) by Einar Kárason, translator is Philip Roughton, publisher MacLehose Press.
  • Elin-ymislegt-a-enskuElín, ýmislegt (E. A Fist or a Heart) by Kristín Eiríksdóttir, translation by Larissa Kyzer, publisher Amazon Crossing.
  • Konan við 1000° (E. Woman at 1000 Degrees) by Hallgrímur Helgason, translation by Brian FitzGibbon and published by Algonquin Books.
  • Kvika (E. Magma) by Þóra Hjörleifsdóttir. Translator is Megan A. Matich and publishers are Picados in the UK and Grove Atlantic/Black Cat in USA.
  • Smartís (E. Smarties) by Gerður Kristný Guðjónsdóttir, translator is Larissa Kyzer and publisher is The Emma Press.
  • Valeyrarvalsinn-a-ensku
  • Stóri skjálfti (E. Grand Mal) by Auður Jónsdóttir, translation by Megan A. Matich and publisher is Dottir Press.
  • Valeyrarvalsinn (E. And the Wind Sees All) by Guðmundur Andri Thorsson in a translation by Björg Árnadóttir and Andrew Cauthery. Publisher: Peirene Press.
  • Sogumadur-a-enskuKompa (E. History. A Mess.) by Sigrún Pálsdóttir, translation by Lytton Smith, publisher Open Letter.
  • Sögumaður (E. Narrator) by Bragi Ólafsson, translation by Lytton Smith and pulished by Open Letter.
  • Öræfi (E. The Wasteland) by Ófeigur Sigurðsson, translated by Lytton Smith, publisher is Deep Vellum.
  • Að heiman (E. Elsewhere) by Arngunnur Árnadóttir, translator is Kara Billey Thordarson and publisher Partus Press.
  • Millilending (E. Through Flight) by Jónas Reynir Gunnarsson, translated by Vala Thorodds, publisher is Partus Press.

Crime Fiction

  • Thyska-husid-a-ensku-2Skuggasund (E. The Shadow District) & Þýska húsið (E. The Shadow Killer) by Arnaldur Indriðason. Translator is Victoria Cribb and publishers are WF Howes in the UK and Thomas Dunne in USA.
  • Gatið (E. The Hole) & Brúðan (E. The Doll) by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir, translated by Victoria Cribb, published by Hodder & Stoughton.
  • Burid-a-enskuBúrið (E. Cage) & Svik (E. Betrayal) by Lilja Sigurðardóttir, translator is Quentin Bates and publisher is Orenda Books.
  • Dimma (E. Darkness) & Drungi (E. The Island) by Ragnar Jónasson. Translator is Quentin Bates and publisher St. Martin's Press.
  • Marrið í stiganum (E. The Creak on the Stairs) by Eva Björg Ægisdóttir in Quentin Bates' translation, published by Orenda Books.
  • Svartigaldur (E. Black Magic) by Stefán Máni, published by Amazon Crossing.


  • Drápa (E. Drápa) & Sálumessa (E. Reykjavik Requiem) by Gerður Kristný Guðjónsdóttir, translated by Rory McTurk. Publisher is ARC Publication.
  • Timakistan-a-enskuPoetry collection: Waitress in Fall by Kristín Ómarsdóttir, translation by Vala Thorodds, published by Carcanet.

Children & YA books

  • Tímakistan (E. The Casket of Time) by Andri Snær Magnason, translation by Björg Árnadóttir and Andrew Cauthery, publisher is Restless Books.

Heida-fjalldalabondinn-a-enskuNon Fiction

  • Um tímann og vatnið (E. On Time and Water) by Andri Snær Magnason, translation by Lytton Smith and published by Open Letter.
  • Heiða, fjalldalabóndinn (E. Heida: A Shepherd at the Edge of the World) by Steinunn Sigurðardóttir, translated by Philip Roughton. Publisher: John Murray.
  • Sagan af Guðrúnu Ketilsdóttur (E. A Tale of a Fool) by Guðný Hallgrímsdóttir. The translator is Anna Yates and publisher is Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group.
  • Mörk – saga mömmu (E. And the Swans Began to Sing) by Þóra Karítas Árnadóttir, translators are Áslaug Torfadóttir and Helen Priscilla Matthews, publisher is Wild Pressed Books.

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