Welcome on board the Baltic Charisma.

The cruise ship has gone back and forth along the same route between Sweden and Finland, day after day, year after year. There are more than 1200 passengers on tonight’s cruise. The staff is ready to open up the bars and restaurants as soon as the ship has left Stockholm. The vibrations from the engines makes the bottles clink softly against each other on the shelves of the tax free shop. The large buffet tables are being filled with foods from all corners of the world. Four security guards are preparing for night fall, tasked with maintaining order in the utter chaos that can be wreaked by drunk passengers crammed into a space they can’t leave.

Everything is routine. But on this particular cruise, there are two passengers unlike any the Baltic Charisma has ever seen. There is something evil on board. Something that could change the world forever, once the ship arrives in Finland.

In the middle of the night, all communications with the outside world are suddenly cut off. The Charisma’s autopilot is stearing her towards Finland, but everyone on the bridge are dead. As long as the ship keeps moving, it’s impossible to put the life rafts in the water.

There is nowhere to run. Nowhere to hide. And there is no way of knowing who you can trust. Because when this sort of evil starts spreading, it’s impossible to stop.

With Blood Cruise Mats Strandberg follows up the success of the Engelsfors Trilogy with an exciting horror novel. Just as in the Engelsfors Trilogy, he mixes social realism with the supernatural. Relationships are tested. Ordinary people are forced to become heroes. But what happens this night can also bring out the worst in people.

492 pages


Brazil: Editora Morro Branco Ltda
Czech Republic: Host
Denmark: Modtryk
Finland: Like
France: Bragelonne
Germany: Fischer Tor
Greece: Kedros
Japan: Hayakawa
Norway: Juritzen
Poland: Marginesy
Russia: Ripol
Serbia: Vulkan
Sweden: Norstedts
Turkey: Eksik Parça Yayınları
UK: Jo Fletcher Books
USA: Quercus

Graphic novel rights

France: Éditions Dupuis

Film rights

Silvio Entertainment and Imaginarium Studios, Sweden.

Blurbs and quotes

“Mats Strandberg knows how to write horror. I bite my nails. I laugh and I cry. And I will never set foot on a cruise ship again.”
Åsa Larsson, author

“Hurray for Mats Strandberg and his surrealistic description of how it is to go on the Finland cruise.”
Jonas Gardell, author, Twitter

“Just finished Blood Cruise by Mats Strandberg and it is sooo good. Buy! Read!”
Peter Sutton, author

“At the beach, sucked into the seeping sense of dread in Mats Strandberg’s Blood Cruise and wonder if I’ll ever be able to face taking another ferry.”
Jeremy Duns



“It’s so f****ing good.”
Gaylords of Darkness / USA

There’s a Scandi noir flavour to the characterisation of all involved, which coupled with excellent pacing and well thought out modifications to the vampire mythology (dealing with one of the often-quoted complaints about their existence), leads to a thoroughly enjoyable novel. Verdict:  Gripping, tense and well-told – an excellent addition to the vampire mythos. 9/10”
SCI FI Bulletin / UK

“It’s an odd setting for an outbreak horror, but a vivid one, painted with such pungency, that you can practically smell the stale vomit.

“This is one terrifying and realistic horror that gave me a few nightmares. You know it’s good when you find elements of the story in your dreams. His portrayal of everyday events is nuanced and believable.”
NetGalley / UK

“You’re in for a blood soaked ride as one death leads to another as the vampire contagion spreads out of control and the small group of passengers left must find safety and a way off their stranded ship…”
Naked Book Reviewer / UK

“If you would like to read a good Stephen King novel, then here you have one. Strandberg describes the relationships between people in the middle of the crisis and with all the horrific elements all around. Don’t hesitate to book this cruise. Where an offer in the bar is not just a free drink, where a stair is not just a path where you can walk up and down but maybe the last possible way to escape, where your private cabin is not a place to withdraw but a trap where you may meet a blood sucking enemy. This is fantastic lecture for your travel.”
Lukupino / FI

Blood Cruise is so bloody that I do not know where to begin. It just has to be said: Read it! On one level it is about fear and how we react to when our reptile brain shouts “Run!” or “Fight!”. On a different level, Strandberg is a very empathetic author. He creates characters that we care about, even the ones that are not always sympathetic. Give the book to everyone who loved The Circle . Or give it to anyone who adores Stephen King.”
Undgdomsbokheftet / NO

“Strandberg let us understand how common his characters are, how lovable and so close. I just want to hug them all (well except for the karaoke man – horrifying through the whole cruise). I feel with them, I suffer with them and I hope none of them will die (well except for you know who). And maybe the most important, I can see myself in several of them. Strandberg is extraordinary skilled in how he builds up the complex characters as well as the plot, and in true “Wire spirit”, he kills anyone of them – main character or not. You have no clue who he has decided will be the next one to see the light or the vampires. Yes, this is a vampire book, but for those of you that are – like me – hesitant to the genre: give it a chance. It is so much more.”
Litteraturkvlaster blog / SWE

“With a few pinches of grave drama Norén style, a hint of romantic love and the kind of human loneliness which is easy to relate to, Mats Strandberg has created a frightful brew where ordinary scary events turn bloody and horrific.”
Upsala Nya Tidning / SWE

“Blood Cruise is both damn scary and presents a fantastic gallery of characters.”
Amelia / SWE

“Buy it – Read it – Borrow it – Read it – Enjoy it – Read it – Share it –Read it – Read it! – Read it!! – Read it!!”
Plusbog, blog / DK

“It is advisable to put fangs on Swedish Mats Strandberg’s adult horror debut, Blood Cruise. You get both horror and realism in the same thrilling plot. And it is well written. He does something more than to just put a sinister plot together. The language is tight and efficient, the setting and personal descriptions are accurate and in a way Blood Cruise is both a loving, sarcastic, and to a certain point a humorous portrait of a community. In true Steven King spirit.”
Berlingske / DK

“Mats Strandberg knows his Stephen King, no doubt about it, but in addition to that Strandberg sovereignly takes his story to another level where it isn’t just about horror for its own sake. The description of the ferry, its passengers and crew and the daily trip to Finland and back again is truly excellent. In addition to describe how 1,200 people react when the liquor and entertainment takes over, the entire story also describes a society that literally is heading for disaster.”
Litteratursiden / DK

“It is mercilessly intrusively described, and along with the spike filled portraits of the ferry’s passengers and frustrated employees it is a strong image on present human greed and the barbarism lurking just below. Mats Strandberg writes sharp as a fang and like a safe hand of a captain he effectively navigates his bloody action.”
Politiken / DK

“The inspiration for horror novel came allegedly to the author, when he went on a trip with the “Finland ferry” and saw what one day stuffed in a big steel casket can do to humans. Anyone who has been on similar ferries, knows that it can be scary enough by itself, but Mats Strandberg adds a horror element to the crossing. Mats Strandberg is referred to as a “Swedish Stephen King”. And the comparison is not far off, since he manages to create an environment, which on the surface is normal but still you know perfectly well that something lurks a second or two away, and that this something will really hurt.”
Weekendavisen / DK

“The reason Strandberg can make childhood demons come to life, is that the depiction of primitive fears and instincts are more frightening than the bloodbath the story develops into. Just like Strandberg’s idol Stephen King, at his best, Strandberg builds up the tension slowly in circumvention movements, by allowing a wide range of voices stand in relief against a breathtaking detail crisp fund.”
Aftonbladet / SWE

“Blood Cruise is a drama without obvious heroes. This is no classic division between good and evil, or the hunted and the hunters. The threats come from everywhere and also the ones you don’t expect to be decebt can actually turn out to do good. This makes Blood Cruise a multilayered horror, the perspectives are constantly shifting, and the reader is forced to refocus over and over.”
Sydsvenskan / SWE

“Blood Cruise is a deeply impressive horror story. It is immensely cleverly told, with respect and sure instincts in every single detail. Almost everyone hurts each other, and almost everyone has their reasons, like desperate rats who attacks everyone around them. Blood Cruise could have been a novel strictly about human relationships, without any supernatural elements. A sad reflection on human loneliness, a bottomless despair over all the mothers and children who do not reach each other. /…/Mats Strandberg knows his Stephen King both stylistically and thematically. But this certainly does not make it theft, simply learning from the best, in order to tell something new in a Swedish setting. Just like with Stephen King, the effective prose is every now and then interrupted by italicized lines that provide the shock effect when something appears in the corner of one’s eye. Mats Strandberg has captured the basic elements of horror, when the story of the human condition is totally laid bare. Man is a helpless child grieving in the abyss. That is big.”
Dagens Nyheter / SWE

“Let me put it this way, Mats Strandberg has written one of the best horror novels I have ever read. I was scared for real. And more important, I was touched for real.”
Folkbladet / SWE

“Innovative and thrilling horror novels is unfortunately rare. But Mats Strandberg’s BLOOD CRUISE is really a new spin on the classic trapped-and-scared-genre.”
DalaDemokraten / SWE

“One recognize some strong ingredients from The Circle; humor, fast pace, the cleverly placed feministic markers and the strong urge to read on. Who should you save, yourself or as many as possible, or all of mankind? The novel also raises the question, who or what is really a monster?”
Smålandsposten / SWE

“The amazing thing about this novel is that the everyday events, the ordinary, is so sensitive portrayed and it is from here the supernatural takes off.  I think people should read this book. It is so good!”
SVT (Swedish Television) / SWE

“It’s nasty, it’s bloody, it’s nail biting scary. But above all, Strandberg knows what makes a horror novel excellent. He brings out the horror in a normally safe environment, a place we all recognize. He highlights the ordinary person, who are you and me. We are all on Strandberg’s ship, and the author exposes us so nicely. Our dreams, our disappointments, our bad and our good choices, our cowardliness and our courage. We all walk around being both heroes and fallen idols. These are the strengths of this book.”
Bokstugan, blog / SWE

“Blood splatters, the anxiety is pounding and the apocalypse is as close as Turku. Mats Strandberg goes all the way when he loads a ship with contagious destruction. He has grown into a full blooded writer but what impresses are his warm and respectful character descriptions.”
Tara / SWE

“In my book shelf  Blood Cruise is placed right by the best by Stephen King and John Ajvide Lindqvist. It will with 100 percent’s certainty become a horror classic.”
Boktokig, blog / SWE

Author photo

Henric Lindsten. For photo rights please contact the photographer at info@lindsten-nilsson.se or www.lindsten-nilsson.se

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