Danish Recommendations: Lene Kaaberbøl

Thanks to everybody who voted for me to do a monthly recommendation of a Danish author / book. Now, a problem with my own little cleverness there is the often lack of Danish authors being translated. However I will do my very best to feature authors who you actually have a chance of reading even if you don't read Danish, and I will also describe a bit of what else they've written. Maybe if it gets enough attention, the publisher will decide to have it translated.

April's featurette is:
 Lene Kaaberbøl, born in 1960, she is a Danish bestselling children's and YA literature author. She's written close to 30 books and she's an author from whom you're almost always guaranteed a good read.

- Her official website
- Goodreads

(She's also got a wikipedia page but it looks to be badly outdated)

Beneath the cut you can find recommendations of a selection of her books; The Shamer Chronicles, the W.I.T.C.H. series, The Trilogy about Katriona Teresadatter, The Gate of Shadows and Wild Witch: Trial of Fire.

Her perhaps  most famous and best series is The Shamer Chronicles, four books spanning from 2000 to 2003, which have been translated into English. It was even planned to be filmatized back in 2007, but nothing came of it unfortunately.
The Shamer Chronicles starts out with The Shamer's Daughter which tells a most gripping tale about the young girl Dina who's inherited her mother's gift as a Shamer - look in their eyes and you will be reminded of everything you were ever ashamed of doing and you will feel horrible. Because of her gift she's got few friends, but when her mother is summoned to handle the brutal murder of the king and his family, Dina goes with and meets the suspect - the king's youngest song. Soon she must fight to save both her mother and the prince.
The story continues in The Shamer's Signet, The Serpent's Gift and The Shamer's War, and this series is the one I can most heartily recommend anyone to read.

Another famous series also available in English is the W.I.T.C.H. series. W.I.T.C.H. is a Disney cartoon series created by Elisabetta Gnone, but Kaaberbøl wrote a book series about the 5 girls in the W.I.T.C.H. universe.

The Trilogy about Katriona Teresadatter from 1992-2000 has as far as I know not been translated, which is a shame as it's a series I much enjoyed when I was around 10-12 years old. Sølvhesten (The Silver Horse), Hermelinen (The Ermine) and Isfuglen (The Icebird) is about the girl Kat who wants to join the Bredinari and become a silver knight.

Another book which hasn't been translated either is Skyggeporten (The Shadow Gate) from 2006. A story about the mute girl Anna who lives with her dad in the green house behind the big house. They've lived there since Anna's mother disappeared 7 years go. Anna is forbidden to ever enter the house as it's too dangerous - but where else can she find her mother? Anna enters another dimension and a thrilling story unfolds.

Kaaberbøl's latest trilogy is one called Vildheks (Wild Witch, but more accurately in this context, Witch of Nature). The first book Ildprøven (Trial by Fire) I recently read and I would give it 3½ stars. It was only some 150 pages long and was as such a very quick read. An incredible amount ot things happen though, resulting in very few explanations or details. It's sometimes a bit too rushed, but overall the story is still balanced and compelling, and the characters are warm and enjoyable - a usual feature of Kaaberbøl's.
I can't help but feel though that the trilogy could just as easily have been a single book. Trial by Fire was published in early winter 2010, and the next two books in the series, Viridians blod (Blood of Viridian) and Kimæras Hævn (Revenge of Chimera) are scheduled to be published in the spring and the fall of 2011, - so most likely the whole thing was done when they published the first, but they split it up either for money or thinking that younger readers wouldn't buy a book if it was too long.


  1. Hello! I just wanted to say that I really like your blog and am a new follower. :) I'm from Scandinavia as well, but from Sweden!

    Very interesting post! I don't usually come across much Danish books either, so it's great you bring them forward!

    Rebecca @ kindle fever

  2. @Rebecca - thank you :D Following you back ^^

  3. Love Lene Kaaberbol, great choice!!

  4. I would love to reader The Shamer Chronicles. What a great story line and it sounds like it's full of intrigue. Love that kind of stuff! Pretty cool recommendations too!

  5. @BookGeek - thank you :D and I can totally recommend that series, it's really good!

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