Camilla Läckberg grew up in Fjällbacka, on the west coast of Sweden. Though she'd always wanted to be a writer, she studied economics at Göteborg University. After attending a crime-writing course organized by the writers' association Ordfront, she began the story that came to be her debut novel, The Ice Princess, which was published in Sweden in 2003. That was followed by a book a year, with the seventh book in her series about Fjällbacka residents Patrik and Erika just published in Sweden. Her second book to be published in the U.S. is The Preacher (Pegasus Books, April 2011).
On your nightstand now:
The Fifth Witness by Michael Connelly. I am a huge Michael Connelly fan, as is my husband, and I was absolutely thrilled to meet him during Thriller Fest last summer at Otto Penzler's bookstore, the Mysterious Bookshop, in New York City.
Favorite book when you were a child:
This is a fairly common answer amongst Swedes I am afraid: Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren. There is even a museum devoted to Astrid and the Pippi series now!
Your top five authors:
Siri Hustvedt, Michael Connelly, Ann Rule, Val McDermid and Peter Robinson. Getting blurbs from Ann and Val was an incredibly fulfilling moment for me as a writer, and as a reader, too. I have been reading Ann for so many years, and she has been a huge influence on my work.
Book you've faked reading:
Everything and anything by Kafka.
Book you're an evangelist for:
The Secret History by Donna Tartt. This is my biggest reading experience ever, and it's actually the only book that makes me jealous. I wish so badly that I was the one who had written it!
Book you've bought for the cover:
The Shell Seekers by Rosamunde Pilcher. I was about 11 or 12 when I saw this in the bookstore. And it was so beautiful I just had to have it. I remember there were these gorgeous shells painted in lush pastel on the cover, and I just had to own it.
Book that changed your life:
Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie. This was the first Agatha Christie I read, and I actually believe that is when I decided to become a crime writer. When a review in a magazine called me "the Agatha Christie of modern times," it was the best compliment I have ever received. (Well maybe except when my husband once said I looked like Megan Fox... liar!)
Favorite line from a book:
"Frankly my dear I don't give a damn." The lady certainly has attitude. I was a teenager when I read Gone with the Wind and I desperately wanted self-confidence and attitude like that. But it didn't rub off on me, unfortunately. I was no Scarlett O'Hara--I was a very meek bookworm with thick glasses and braces.
Book you most want to read again for the first time:
The Secret History by Donna Tartt.