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Reykjavík International Literary Festival 2017


The Reykjavík International Literary Festival (RILF) takes place September 6-9, at various venues throughout Reykjavík. Founded in 1985, this will be the 13th time RILF takes place, bringing together acclaimed authors from around the globe to for readings, talks, and other events.

Lauded as one of Northern Europe’s biggest literary events, RILF has hosted over three hundred international authors, such as Margaret Atwood, Haruki Murakami and Kurt Vonnegut.
This year, a number of authors, both Icelandic and international, will be attending, participating in numerous events such as readings, panel discussions, stand-up comedy and loads more. These are just a few of the authors attending this year, for the full schedule visit


Some of the Authors Attending the Festival

Hiromi Kawakami

Among the most famous contemporary writers in Japan, Kawakami gained international praise for her 2001 novel, The Briefcase/Strange Weather In Tokyo. It revolves around a young woman who happens to meet her old high school teacher in a bar, developing a strange relationship with the man who is in his 70’s. Her books have received numerous awards such as the Tanizaki Prize, which is the most prestigious literary award in Japan.



Born as Sigurjón Birgir Sigurðsson, Sjón is a native Reykjavík citizen known primarily for his poetry and novels, as well as being a successful playwright and children’s author.

A close friend and frequent collaborator with singer Björk, he has written lyrics for a number of her songs, such as Jóga. In 2001, Sjón was also nominated for the 2001 Oscars and Golden Globe, along with Björk and Lars von Trier for the song “I’ve seen it all”.


Timothy Snyder

Author of Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin, Snyder is an expert on World War II. Bloodlands re-examines all of the forces at play, describing WWII as the worst suffering and bloodshed in western history. He compares the off-combat killings of the Nazi’s and Soviets, delving into statistics and overlooked parts of history. This author provides us with a fresh look at the craft of nonfiction writing, as well as vital commentary on socio-politics.


Jónína Leósdóttir

Jónína has written numerous novels, biographies and children’s stories. The wife of former prime minister of Iceland, Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, Jónína wrote their unconventional love story in an autobiography called Við Jóhanna.

Jónína founded, among other women, Fjöruverðlaunin, a literary award for women. Over the past years, she has been focusing on her award-winning Edda detective series, with a third instalment on its way in 2018.


Arnaldur Indriðarson

Arnaldur Indriðarson is one of the most successful Icelandic authors of all time and has won heaps of awards for his Nordic noir crime novels. He won the Nordic Crime Novel award two years in a row, as well as the CWA Cold Dagger award for his novel Grafarþögn. His works have been sold in over twelve million copies and translated into forty languages. One of his novels, Mýrin, was adapted into a film by the same name in 2006.


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