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Crime in Translation

A list of crime novels from other countries translated into English.

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An upsurge in intrest in crime novels in translation, especially those from Scandinavian countries, has revealed to American readers a world of murder and intrigue far beyond our shores.  This list, although not exhaustive, includes novels translated from their original languages into English owned by libraries in the South Central Library System.  Authors are listed under the original published language and those with particular characters or series are noted.  Descriptions are from the website


  • Mallo, Ernesto.  Superintendent “Perro” Lascano, a Buenos Aires police detective in late 1970s Argentina. 


  • Haas, Wolf.  Simon Brenner, a police detective, the Columbo of Austria.


  • Betto, Frei. 


  • Padura, Leonardo.  Mario Conde, a police inspector in Havana, Cuba, in the Havana Quartet.


  • Conrad, Patrick. 
  • Hoeg, Peter. 
  • Kaaberbol, Lena and Friis, Agnete.  Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse in Copenhagen. 


  • Nykänen, Harri.  Ariel Kafka, a police inspector in the Violent Crime Unit and one of only two Jewish cops in the country, in Helsinki. 


  • Alaux, Jean-Pierre and Noel Balen.  Benjamin Cooker, a winemaker and gentleman detective in France.
  • Cabasson, Armand.  Quentin Margont, an officer and investigator in the Grande Armée, in the early 1800s, during the Napoleonic Wars.
  • De Villiers, Gérard.  Malko Linge, an Austrian prince and international agent for the CIA.
  • Georget, Philippe. Gilles Sebag, a police detective in the Catalan region of France. 
  • Izzo, Jean-Claude.  Fabio Montale, a policeman based in Marseilles.
  • LeMaitre, Pierre.  Camille Verhoeven, a police commandant in Paris.
  • Manchette, Jean-Patrick.
  • Molay, Fréderique. Nico Sirsky, chief of the criminal investigation division in Paris.
  • Parot, Jean-Francois.  Nicolas Le Floch, a young Breton policemen in 1760s Paris. 
  • Simenon, Georges.  Inspector Maigret, based in Paris; non-series noir and thrillers.
  • Vargas, Fred.  Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg, police commandant based in Paris. 


  • Arjouni, Jakob.  Kemal Kayankaya, a private investigator of Turkish background, in Frankfurt, Germany.
  • Hammesfahr, Petra
  • Kettenbach, Hans Werner. 
  • Schenkel, Andrea Maria. 


  • Arnaldur Indridason. Erlendur Sveinsson, detective inspector in Reykjavik.
  • Yrsa Sigurdardottir.  Thóra Gudmundsdottir, a lawyer in Reykjavik, Iceland.


  • Camilleri, Andrea.  Salvo Montalbano, police inspector in Sicily. 
  • Carlotto, Massimo. Marco “Alligator” Buratti, ex-con and blues singer now working as a private investigator in Venice; Giorgio Pellegrini, former leftist radical and guerilla fighter, later a businessman who becomes entangled in the mafia.
  • De Giovanni, Maurizio. Luigi Alfredo Ricciardi, a police inspector in 1930s Naples; Giuseppe Lojacono, a police inspector in Naples.
  • Di Piazza, Giuseppe.
  • Giordani, Mario.  Poldi, a retired Bavarian widow who has moved to Sicily.  
  • Giuttari, Michele.  Michele Ferrara, chief inspector in Florence. 
  • Lucarelli, Carlo.  Grazia Negro, detective tasked with catching serial killers in Bologna; Commissario De Luca, police commissioner in the waning days of World War II and its aftermath in northern Italy. 
  • Morozzi, Gianluca. 
  • Scerbanenco, Giorgio.  Duca Lamberti, a physician just released from prison for performing euthanasia, now turned private investigator, in Milan, Italy.


  • Higashino, Keigo.   Manabu Yukawa (“Detective Galileo”), a physics professor and police detective Kusanagi, Tokyo. 
  • Maijo, Otaro. 
  • Matsumoto, Seicho.
  • Nakamura, Fuminori.
  • Takagi, Akimitsu.
  • Togawa, Masako.
  • Yokoyama, Hideo.
  • Yoshida, Shuichi. 


  • Noort, Saskia


  • Fossum, Karin.  Konrad Sejer, police inspector in a small mountainous Norway town. 
  • Nesbo, Jo.  Harry Hole, police inspector in Oslo.
  • Sundstol, Vidar.  Lance Hansen, a Forest Service officer and the grandson of Norwegian immigrants, in Cook County, Minnesota, on the north shore of Lake Superior, in the Minnesota Trilogy.


  • Krajewski, Marek.  Eberhard Mock, a police detective, and university classics dropout, starting in 1919 Breslau (now Wroclaw, in Poland).


  • Akunin, Boris.  Erast Fandorin, sleuth in 19th century St. Peterburg; Sister Pelagia, a nun in a province beyond the Volga in 19th century Russia. 

South Africa

  • Meyer, Deon.  Benny Griessel, an aging, alcoholic police inspector in Capetown, South Africa.


  • Gimenez-Bartlett, Alicia. Petra Delicado, an ex-lawyer police inspector, and her sidekick, sergeant Fermín Garzón in Barcelona. 
  • Perez-Reverte, Arturo.  Captain Diego Alatriste, a swordsman for hire in 17th century Spain.
  • Solana, Teresa.  Eduard Martíez and Borja Masdéu, non-identical twins and partners in Frau Consultants, an extralegal investigative agency, in Barcelona.


  • Alvtegen, Karin. 
  • Borjlind, Cilla and Rolf. 
  • Horst, Jorn Lier. William Wisting, chief inspector of police and head of CID, in Larvik, Norway.
  • Jungstedt, Mari. Anders Knutas, a police inspector on Gotland island, Sweden.
  • Kepler, Lars.  Joona Linna, a detective inspector in Stockholm, Sweden​.
  • Lapidus, Jens. Criminal underground in Stockholm in the Stockholm Noir trilogy. 
  • Larsson, Asa.  Rebecka Martinsson, a tax attorney in Stockholm, called back to her hometown Kiruna, north of the Arctic Circle.
  • Larsson, Stieg.  Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist, a journalist, in the Millennium trilogy
  • Roslund, Anders and Borge Hellstrom. Ewert Grens, a detective inspector, in Stockholm.
  • Tursten, Helene. Irene Huss, a detective inspector in the Violent Crimes Unit in Goteborg. 


  • Glauser, Friedrich.  Jakob Studer, a police sergeant (Wachtmeister) in 1930s Bern, Switzerland.


  • Aykol, Esmahan.  Kati Hirschel, the 30-something German owner of the only mystery bookshop in Istanbul. 
  • Somer, Mehmet Murat.   Burçak Veral, a transvestite nightclub hostess by night, and computer technician by day, in Istanbul, Turkey, in the Turkish Delight mysteries. 

updated 11/26/19 kah