Madeleine Hessérus is an author of fiction. She has been described as a writer portraying a landscape of melancholy through a poetic and psychologically powerful language, and has been praised for her eloquent and seducing prose. The Danish daily newspaper Berlingske described her as “one of Sweden´s most interesting writers”.

She was born in Stockholm on 21 November 1953. Her family subsequently moved to the town of Västerås in eastern Sweden, where she grew up. As a teenager she was admitted to the Swedish Royal Ballet School in Stockholm. After several years of ballet schooling she injured a foot that forced her to give up dancing and find another career. She studied medicine at Uppsala University and graduated with a Bachelor of Medical Sciences.

In the mid 1990´s she started out as a playwright and wrote dramas for radio and the stage. In 1997 her first collection of short stories, Inte vackrare än i Valparaíso (Not as Beautiful as in Valparaíso), was published to great acclaim, followed by Den döda drottningen (The Dead Queen) 2001.

The novel Till Isola (To Isola) found many readers and was praised for its sharp criticism of modern urban life. It was followed by Staden utan kvinnor (The City without Women) 2011, a visionary story about Stockholm in a near future.  Her third novel, Elefantens fot (The Elephant´s Foot) 2016, is a multi-faceted love story set in the eerie Zone of Exclusion around Chernobyl. Her next novel Kristallpalatset (The Chrystal Palace) is published in 2024.

Madeleine Hessérus novels have been translated into several foreign languages.

© Photo Cato Lein