Forests. On trees, people and thousands of other phenomenal species

Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson

NORLA Selected Title

Skogen. Om trær, folk og 25 000 andre arter
Kagge Forlag Fall 2023
Non-Fiction / Nature writing, Popular Science
60000 Words
Norwegian PDF and English sample chapters

Product sheet (PDF)

Skogen 4[72]

Selected title by NORLA – extensive translation grants available.

For a tree, life after death isn’t just a hope but a reality.

This is a book about forests; forest nature, species diversity and people; about the span from the millimetric perspective of an insect’s short life – lived in its entirety beneath a scrap of bark – to the miles-wide expanses of sylvan landscapes where our exploitation of forests has shaped cultures and societies over hundreds of years. It is a book about surprising interactions and strange species, a book about how knowledge about nature and views of nature have changed over the generations. About where we come from and where we stand today. By weaving together ecology, history, politics and culture into an overarching narrative, the book offers readers an insight into a profoundly fascinating ecosystem, and give them a basis for understanding the role forests play in today’s nature and climate crisis.

The first chapter describes the characteristics of a forest. The next deals with forest fires and storms. A third chapter looks at one of the most living things in the forest: dead trees. In the fourth you’ll find examples of strange and surprising interactions between dead trees and other species. The fifth chapter is about how it isn’t always easy to be a rare species in the forest, while chapter six hops like a hare through history, showing how timber has been used over the centuries. The seventh chapter covers ecosystem services other than timber. In chapter eight, we roam through the cultural undergrowth, defined as all the aspects of forests that rouse emotions and inspire expansive thoughts – be they myths, beliefs, pictures, books or just forests themselves. Or their absence. The ninth chapter is devoted to the ongoing debate about forests, before we round off with the tenth chapter, which is all about time, perspective and the shifting baselines in the forest.

Foreign rights

Polaris, Sweden
De Bezige Bij, Netherlands
HGV, Hungary
BarlinLibros, World Spanish

“In a low-key and whimsical way, the author weaves these knowledge-driven chapters together in both a moving and personal presentation of the human relationship to linear and circular time, to the mysteries of the forest and the violent forces that shape both the trees’ and our own lives.”

Stavanger Aftenblad

“Wonderful and Terrifying. Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson’s book about the forest should be obligatory reading in every home.”


“No book I have read on the subject in recent years resembles “SKOGEN” by Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson. The book is a masterpiece of popular science.”


“Hot news about the forest … Biologist Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson’s new book is worth all the trees that have gone into the production of the book – and more.”