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Christina Courtenay - Blog Story Detail

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14/10/2014: Mini Tour of Sweden 2014

I've had a fantastic week in Sweden (despite the weather!), going on a mini tour of book stores in the Southern part and meeting lovely, enthusiastic store owners and readers!

We kicked off in a town called Laholm, near Sweden's south west coast, where the owners of Laholms Bokhandel, Diana and Stefan, had invited their customers for an evening of books and chat. And what a fabulous spread they put on - delicious home made soup and bread to start off with, then some wonderful chocolate cake with coffee after the talks. I teamed up with fellow EA Förlag authors Ulla Gabay and Gustave Lund, and we had a very enjoyable evening!

The following day, after a quick visit to see EA Förlag's offices, I spent some time in the town of Varberg, where the staff at Göranssons Bokhandel (aka Akademibokhandeln Varberg) made me very welcome. I chatted to their customers and met some lovely people. During the afternoon I had a chance to explore the town and its famous fort - Varbergs Fästning - a truly intimidating place (see photos below)! There had been a fort on the site since the 13th century, with the Swedes and Danes taking turns to occupy and own it (and this part of the country). Also used as a prison for a while, I could well imagine how bleak and forbidding it must have seemed, especially in winter, to the poor souls incarcerated there. But what views, truly stunning!

In the evening I attended a mini fashion show in the shop She in Halmstad, Another city on the west coast. The store owners put on a great show for a select audience and very kindly featured me and my books as well. And apart from some fabulous fashion, the attendees were treated to drinks and canapes - what a brilliant idea!

That concluded my trip to the western parts of Sweden and I headed towards more familiar territory - the county of Småland, which is where I come from. I did a book signing in the Eksjö Bokhandel, a small but perfect indie book store, the kind where you feel warmly welcomed and free to browse for hours. Once again, the owners made me feel at home and I enjoyed chatting to readers and friends who kindly popped in. I hope to visit the store soon again as they are only a short drive from my home town.

Finally, Gustave and I met up in the city of Jönköping, at the southern most tip of Lake Vättern (one of the two largest in Sweden), where we did a joint signing at the A6 Mall, a haven for local shoppers. My "clan " and some of my friends very kindly turned up to support us, and we had fun talking to other readers, as well as the wonderful staff at Akademibokhandeln A6.

Huge thanks to EA Förlag and to all the wonderful book stores who hosted us - hope to see you all soon again!

Now I have some time to enjoy the Swedish autumn, which is much further along than in England. The forests around here are beautiful at the moment and the air is crisp and fresh - bliss!

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