In order to get in the right 'mood' for a trip to Sweden, I'd like to read some English-language fiction and non-fiction that is set in Sweden. This could take the form of travelogues, novels, or historical accounts.

Lonely Planet usually has some good listings for travel reading, but for some reason their recommendations for Sweden are abysmal, including, for example, "two chapters of Bill Bryson's Neither Here Nor There." What?

What are some good books that convey some of the zeitgeist, atmosphere, and history of Sweden?

(Example: If I were asking for films, My Life as a Dog would come near the top of the list. If I were asking about Berlin, In the Garden of Beasts would be a superb recommendation. Any travelogues would also be appropriate.)

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    "eliciting list-style answers, suggestions or recommendations on a topic or place" is not the right type of question for this site, from the faq. You're essentially polling, so I suspect in its current form you're going to get some closevotes or downvotes. If you can reword it to better match the rules in the faq, it might be a good idea. "List-questions" are generally closed is because there is no "one-right-answer", which is the type of site Stackexchange aims to be - answering specific questions, unlike discussion/polling questions which are better suited to a forum. – Mark Mayo Feb 5 '13 at 1:31
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    @nibot It could well turn out to be the case that when you arrive in a country it doesnt turn out to be anything like the literature you have written, this could lead to thorough disappointment. Just go to Sweden with a open mind - and no not all Swedish people are platinum blondes :) – Simon Feb 5 '13 at 11:44
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    Generally you will get variety from Pippi Longstocking to Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Karlson Feb 5 '13 at 15:18

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