A-Viking We Shall Go


It’s 2:15 a.m.

Tomorrow morning I’m getting on a plane and flying to Sweden, the land of my forefathers, with Ben Shive and Andy Gullahorn. This will be our sixth (seventh?) tour in Sweden, where the coffee is black, the ice cream is plentiful, the engineering is sleek and tasteful, the breakfasts are delicious, and the people talk nothing like the Swedish chef on the Muppet Show. Really.

planeThe Captains Courageous and I are sad to leave our wives and children for two weeks (please pray for them, if you’re the type who does that sort of thing), but we’re also grateful for the chance to once again visit such a beautiful country with our songs and stories. The place has become precious to me not just because of my ancestry (my great-grandfather was from a city called Kalmar–a name you Wingfeather Saga readers know well), but because of the friendships that have developed over the years. These two guys named Kaj (pronounced like “sigh” with a k) and Samuel have worked like vikings to set up concert after concert for us, and over the years, the following has grown enough that this trip is our busiest yet (we’re doing eleven shows in about as many days).

Another reason I’m excited about the trip is that just this morning I sent my final, FINAL edits for The Monster in the Hollows off to the press. That, ladies and germs, frees up a lot of mental RAM. And emotional hard drive space. And time. And that means I’m going to read, oh, nine books or so on the flight across the Atlantic, guilt-free. (The Passage by Justin Cronin, The Professor and the Madman by Simon Winchester, Looking Before and After: Testimony and the Christian Life by Alan Jacobs, and Skeletons on the Zahara by Dean King.) This is what my brother and Stephen King call “feeding the gnome”. After pouring so much into the writing of The Monster in the Hollows, it’ll be nice to take a long, cool drink of some good writing.

If you live in Sweden, we’ll see you in a few hours. If you live in the States, we’ll be back soon. Thanks for reading!

Andrew Peterson is a singer-songwriter and author. Andrew has released more than ten records over the past twenty years, earning him a reputation for songs that connect with his listeners in ways equally powerful, poetic, and intimate. As an author, Andrew’s books include the four volumes of the award-winning Wingfeather Saga, released in collectible hardcover editions through Random House in 2020, and his creative memoir, Adorning the Dark, released in 2019 through B&H Publishing.


  1. Tom Henderson

    You will enjoy The Professor and the Madman. I listened to it a few years ago, and was surprised at how enthralling a book about the Oxford English Dictionary could be.

  2. Collin Bullard

    Glad to hear the last book is finished and you can do some joy-reading; your finishing gives me a little hope… I’m anticipating the day when I can breathe the same sigh of relief (writing an all-consuming thesis at the moment). Wish the tour included a stopover in the UK, Cambridge is lovely in April! Be well; praying for the Captains as well as the “Captainettes.”

  3. Ugly Biscuit


    You need to read Riggleberry Bloke and other silly whatknots. That is of course if you feel like, dying laughing!

    You and you’re families are all prayed up over here in yucky Durham North Carolina!

  4. PaulH

    I am a Dutch/German/Scot who has a growing interest of everything Scandinaviain.
    I know it is probably too late this go around, but just an idea for next time: Please consider doing a video diary of your Swedish tour sometime as to help us stationary Americans get a chance to visualize the trip, culture and people. This would be greatly enjoyed more than you may realize.

  5. carrie luke

    I love Alan Jacobs, and I love hearing of the various sources for Wingfeather terminology. I’m so excited about this series. The Igiby’s have quickly become part of our family.

    I will be praying for the blessing of you three across the sea. And for your families, who give away so much of you(collective you) in order for you to be that blessing.

    I marvel at and am moved by their enormous sacrifices for us (the collective us).
    Thank you so much Peterson, Shive, and Gullahorn Family.

  6. John Christopher

    I hope you have a blessed trip. I like your reading list. I loved The Passage! I hope you tell us what you think of it then.

  7. Evie Coates


    See if you can get your hands on some Smörgåstårta (pronounced smeurrrr-goss-tohrt-aa). Gird up your loins, brothers. And can you bring me back some Kalles Kaviar? It comes in a blue toothpaste-like tube with a cute, tow-headed boy on the front. Oh! And eat some vafflor (waffles) with cloudberries for me!! It’s a lowdown shame that you barely missed Vafflor Dag (March 25)….

    My mouth is crying.

    Safe travels and God’s speed, pojkar.

  8. Gavin Doherty

    Hoping as you pass over or skirt round us mad celts here in Ireland, that you suddenly think ‘wouldn’t it be great to play there sometime!!!’

    If you do, let me know and I’ll certainly have a go at working like a viking to set it up.

  9. BuckBuck the Nordic Wonderduck

    “Like” on EmmaJ’s comment.

    “Like” that Evie knew how to type all those weird vowel markers.

    http://www.beardhead.com/ You should have bought these hats before you left.

    Stroopwafels are from the Netherlands, but you should still eat them if you can find them. Premade ones come in a round tin. They are like little crispy cinnamon waffles with this sticky honey carmel stuff between. SOOOO good.

  10. Johan M

    Welcome to Sweden! Although there will be no concert in Kalmar this time, I will see you guys this weekend.

  11. Canaan Bound

    Godspeed, Captains!

    BuckBuck, I think there should be beardheads made available @ Hutchmoot. Could you arrange that, please? Thanks. Looking forward to it.

  12. Jaclyn

    Praying for your families and your adventures! I hope you enjoy your reading marathon– The Professor and the Madman (a gift from a professor) is on my To Be Read shelf too =)

  13. jacobdmorris

    When you finish The Professor and the Madman, you should pick up Winchester’s The Meaning of Everything– a great read of a broader history of the OED.

  14. EmmaJ

    I found The Professor and the Madman a surprising combination of interesting-ness and horrifying-ness. One of those tales which so well proves that cliche about veracity sometimes being more outrageous than fantasy, or something like that.

  15. Joy C

    Thank you Andrew – and Andy and Ben. Please would you come back to prison again. And btw, we’re playing songs from “Room to Breathe” and RLII this week. Thank you, Joy

  16. sallie kate

    I may go to IKEA just to feel like I’m part of the adventure!

    And boy O boy that must be some lightning-fast reading. Famished gnome, I suppose.

  17. sallie kate

    PS – Been incredibly nourished (again) by the Resurrection Letters meditations this season. And sharing with anyone who will read ’em. Thank ya much, Mr. Proprietor.

  18. Loren

    I was wondering how the Sweden tour fit into the writing process. What a wonderful way to “recover”! We’re looking forward to the finished book since we can’t get to Sweden to hear a concert. Hmmm… sallie kate, good idea about IKEA! We’ve got one down the road from us. That’s the extent of my Swede….

  19. luaphacim

    I would just like to say that if the carts at IKEA are any indication of the loveliness and craftiness of the Swedish people, I am obviously long overdue for a visit to their hallowed shores.

  20. Canaan Bound


    BuckBuck, HA! Those are legit. The only thing better than a CS Lewis one would be a REVERSIBLE one. CS Lewis on one side, Aslan on the other.

  21. Kimberly

    I’m awake at 3:45am because I had oral surgery on Wednesday. This post and the comments that followed did more to soothe me than anything I’ve tried so far. I love the Rabbit Room.

  22. Kimberly

    Btw- Andrew, I would love to hear how you like The Passage by Justin Cronin. I’ve heard some good things about it.

  23. Nick and Susan

    I must admit that although last week I said somewhere on fb that you (AP) have the best job in the world, and although the travelling/reading/eating etc. must be fun at times, I did have in the back of my mind when I wrote that, the fact that you (and the other artists on here) must leave your family for weeks at a time. (I homeschool my 4 children and my husband is gone all day at work – if he were gone for weeks at a time it would be tough).

    My husband and I saw Michael Card in concert over here in England last week, he played in this lovely old church and the whole evening was marvelous. But, I was mindful of the sacrifice he and others like him must make when they do what they do. Appreciate it.


  24. Andrew Peterson


    Thank you guys for the well-wishes. I finished The Passage and The Professor and the Madman, and am now delving into the Alan Jacobs book. Thanks for your prayers on our trip. Now: fika!

  25. Erik from Linköping

    Thanks again for the concert! It was wonderful! I thought about coming again tonight in Jönköping, but I couldn’t make it, unfortunately. Hope you’re having a great time there as well. Thanks for your CD, it seems promising. Looking forward to hear more of the stories 😉
    Wish you a happy trip back to the states, where there is no fika as far as the eye can see!

  26. Matt Peterson

    Im pumped about the new book coming out. I bought the other two around Christmas and read them to my boys every night. They always begged for one more chapter. My oldest (Andrew) cried when Nugget died. We love the books and the music. Keep up the great work.


  27. Michael Ramsay

    I’d just like to point out that Jim was always very clear that the Swedish chef spoke mock-Swedish. I have always assumed there was a little acknowledged and less discussed Scandinavian underground that spoke only mock-Swedish. If this subculture is not extant in Sweden, then how can I make sense of the panorama of mock- languages so fluently demonstrated in Danny Kay’s The Court Jester?

  28. Sabina, Varberg, Sweden

    Went to your concert in Varberg, Sweden last night, and I think your wish came through – you made the world a more beautiful and peaceful place. Thank you. And thank you to the Captainettes, you are really a part of the blessing the concerts are.
    Can´t wait to read The Monster… and the other books in the series! Hope I can translate to Swedish as I read to my boys…! There´s no Swedish edition, is there??

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