"Who knew 18th century Sweden could be so much fun? Karen Engelmann's debut novel, The Stockholm Octavo is a juicy page-turner…."


Dangerous Liaisons meets Charles Dickens… terrific fun.”

Portsmouth Herald

“A full deck of piquant pleasures...elegant and precarious...”

Washington Post

“[A] deliciously sly first novel...The Stockholm Octavo is an irresistible cipher between two covers—an atmospheric tale of many rogues and a few innocents gambling on politics and romance in the cold, cruel north.”

NY Times

Stockholm, 1791: politics, passion, magic and murder!

Revolution and unrest are boiling up on the continent of Europe, but Sweden seems immune. All is well in the capitol city of Stockholm or so it seems to Emil Larsson, a self-satisfied bureaucrat in the Office of Customs and Excise and a true man of the Town – drinker, card shark, and contented bachelor. That is until Mrs. Sofia Sparrow, fortune-teller and proprietor of an exclusive gaming parlor, shares a vision of a golden path that will lead Emil to love and connection.

Mrs. Sparrow lays an Octavo for him, a spread of eight cards that augur the eight individuals who can help him realize this vision–if he can find them. But as Emil eagerly searches for his eight, he comes to the startling realization that finding them is no longer just a game of the heart, but crucial to foiling the assassination of King Gustav III and pulling his country back from the crumbling precipice of rebellion and chaos.

Historical fiction set in the far north during the turbulence of the late 18th century, The Stockholm Octavo portrays a world of intrigue, betrayal and love infused with cartomancy, folding fans, and the inevitability of fate.