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Bjorn Verenson

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photo by Antoine Kline

Bjorn Verenson is one of four pseudonyms that I've used (and the only pseudonym I've used more than once). Bjorn Verenson is both the Swedish author of, and the Swedish detective in, a series of Swedish crime stories, mystery novellas, and roman noirs.

Instead of writing the fiction, I've written short pamphlets in which the plot of each novel or story is elaborated with representative moments of dialogue and key scenes included (for a rough equivalent see my proto-story "Knowledge" which appeared in Unsaid #2). These templates for nonexistent (or not yet existing) fictions are produced annually in handsewn limited editions (Japanese stab bindings) of 15 numbered copies distributed to several close friends and family members on my birthday (August 12), each inscribed "From Växjö with Love, Yours, Bjorn Verenson."

More readily available is a letter a concerned Bjorn Verenson wrote, included in the first issue of Birkensnake magazine (not listed in the table of contents), a story he published in Unsaid #4, "The Basis of My Gospel", and a story in New York Tyrant 3.2, "A Wind."

Perhaps paradoxically, Bjorn Again was the initial Bjorn offering. In it, Swedish master detective Bjorn stumbles into an encounter with a Christian cult who are more than what they seem....

A classic amnesia noir. Bjorn awakens with a lump on his head and no memory of where he's spent the last week. Soon he realizes he's being pursued—but is it by the police or by some more sinister group? Increasingly he has the feeling that while he may be calling himself Bjorn now, he wasn't Bjorn yesterday.... Or was he?

An encounter with a scruffy madman with a penchant for Wild West garb and an uncanny resemblance to Lee Marvin leads Bjorn on a merry chase through a tangled series of temporally displaced murders.

Bjorn's well-deserved vacation on an island in Southeast Asia is interrupted when the island's rare peat forests prove themselves the keepers of a grisly secret....

Turnabout's fair play when, instead of being on the trail of a criminal, Bjorn finds himself in the thick of it, framed for a murder he didn't commit. He's got to find the real killer fast, before the trap closes completely and there's no way out...

Cross a penchant for murder with a society of Swedish Elvis impersonators and you end up with a little less conversation, a little more murder....

When a singer shows up dead in a nightclub, Bjorn sets off to follow his most convoluted trail yet, a trail that leads from the seamier side of Växjö all the way to European Idol finals where Bjorn races to prevent a onstage performance whose finale is murder.

When a limousine containing the Swedish prime minister's son disappears, Bjorn sets out in hot pursuit. But will he be able to unravel the plot before Bible-obsessed killer reenacts Abraham's sacrifice of Isaac? Only time will tell....