Last year we flew over the bridge from… yes, you guessed it, The Bridge, and stayed in a Copenhagen hotel which later featured in The Bridge 2.
This year we were lucky enough to visit Stockholm for round two of Scandi Crime Bingo. It’s an amazing city and we had a fantastic and surprisingly sunny time, visiting the Vasa Museum, strolling round Gamla Stan, checking out the cool Bengt & Lotta designs and even squeezing in a trip to Kugens Kurva on the free shuttle bus to the largest IKEA store in the world.
But what made it even cooler was reading The Girl Who Played with Fire while I was there. I’m rather late to the Stieg Larsson party, I know, but I’m glad I waited because reading city-specific books in situ makes them extra-special. Practically every street or cafe that the characters visited was one we’d passed or walked down that day. Every view they saw out of their window was one I’d seen for real. And when two minor character stopped off at the Wayne’s Coffee on our road, just up from our hotel… well, I was practically there… in the book!
I trudged one poor member of our party round Södermalm to follow in Lisbeth’s Dragon Tattoo footsteps, checking out Lundagatan and Blomkvist’s place on Belmagatan. I even made everyone look at the Billy’s Frozen pizzas in the supermarket! It’s a little known fact but you get bonus bingo points for frozen fast food…
The Scandi Crime fest didn’t stop there though, oh no… We saw the Skansen wolverine pit where the body was discovered in Arne Dahl (no wolverines in sight but hey, I was excited enough by an empty pit) and then on the last day my husband spotted Saga Noren herself (or rather the actress Sofia Helin) on the main shopping street. I only have his word for it, sadly (I was looking the other way – probably thinking about Lisbeth Salander or what souvenir I could possibly buy that would make me feel like I lived in Stockholm rather than soggy old Devon), but he was pretty convinced. I make that a full house. BINGO!