Foto Per Manning

Thorvald Steen

Thorvald Steen’s both gritty and intellectually sophisticated historical novels have been published in 18 countries. At home he is equally respected and loved for his tender contemporary novels, starting with the heartbreaking coming-of-age novel The Weight of Snow Crystals.

Book info
Language
Foreign publisher
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • DanishTurbine
  • FaroeseSprotin
  • SwedishHeidruns Förlag
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • BulgarianMATCOM
  • SwedishHeidruns Förlag
  • TurkishApril
  • Balance
  • Balanse
  • Thorvald Steen
  • 20112
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • ArabicNawafez (Egypt)
  • BulgarianMATCOM
  • RomanianPandora
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • TurkishIthaki
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • SwedishNorstedts
  • TurkishIthaki
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • CzechDoplnek
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • SwedishNorstedts
  • TurkishIthaki
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • CzechDoplnek
  • GermanPforte
  • KurdishAvesta
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • SlovakianMilaniuM Books
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • ArabicPWU
  • DanishBatzer
  • FaroeseNylendi
  • FinnishLike
  • FrenchCalmann-Lévy
  • IcelandicForlagid
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • SwedishNorstedts
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American English, British EnglishSeagull Books
  • BulgarianPandorama
  • DanishPer Kofod
  • FinnishLike
  • FrenchCalmann-Lévy
  • GermanPforte
  • GermanSuhrkamp/Insel Verlag
  • KurdishAvesta
  • RomanianPandora
  • RussianMIC Publishing
  • SwedishNorstedts
  • TurkishCan Yayinlari
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • British EnglishGreen Integer
  • DanishPer Kofod
  • FinnishLike
  • GermanSuhrkamp/Insel Verlag
  • KurdishAvesta
  • RomanianPandora
  • SwedishRaben & Sjögren
  • LanguageForeign publisher
  • American EnglishSun and Moon
  • ArabicPWU
  • DanishPer Kofod
  • FinnishLike
  • FrenchCalmann-Lévy
  • GermanSuhrkamp/Insel Verlag
  • KurdishAvesta
  • RomanianPandora
  • SpanishLosada
  • SwedishNorstedts
  • TurkishCan Yayinlari

Thorvald Steen (b. 1954) made his literary debut in 1983, and he has subsequently published a wide range of novels, plays, collections of poems, books of short stories, children’s books and essays. He has distinguished himself as one of Norway’s leading internationally-oriented writers. His Norwegian breakthrough came in 1992 with a cycle of poems, Fire and shortly afterwards he achieved international recognition with his series of inventive historical novels: Don Carlos (1993), Giovanni (1995), Constantinople (1999), The Little Horse (2002), Camel Clouds (2004) and Lionheart (2010). In 2006 Steen wrote the coming-of-age novel The Weight of Snow Crystals, which was followed in 2008 with the freestanding sequel The Longest Leap. The nameless main character of these two books also features in the critically acclaimed Balance (2012). He has been working on The Invisible Library for the last six years.

International critics have often featured Steen as an author who vitalizes the historical novel. Steen’s works are translated into more than 20 languages and he has received several literary prizes, nominations and awards both at home and abroad. In 1993 he received Gyldendals legat (The Gyldendal Grant). The Belgian newspaper Le Soir declared Don Carlos one of the five best novels translated into French in 1996. The newspaper Clarin in Argentina chose Steen as “Best new writer” for Don Carlos the same year. In 2001 he received the Norwegian Doubloug Prize for his entire work. The novel Camel Clouds was elected novel of the year by the Turkish newspaper Bir Gun in 2006 and won the Slovak Jan Holly Award in 2007. In 2006 Steen also received the Comenius Medal from the University of Bratislava for his historical novels. The play Desert Storms, written together with Tariq Ali, was nominated for the prestigious Hedda Award for best performance in 2010.

Steen was the chairman of The Norwegian Author’s Union (1991-97) and he has been a honorary menber of the union since 1997. He has also been Chairman of the Board in Norla (Norwegian Literature Abroad) since 1997 and a member of the Board of PEN since 2003. In 2004 he received a Govermental Stipend from the Norwegian Minister of Culture.