#IncidentReport | #BookReview | RED SNOW (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #2) by Will Dean @willrdean (January 10th 2019, Point Blank Books @ptblankbks @oneworldnews)

RED SNOW (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #2) by Will Dean
10th January 2019, Point Blank Books

TWO BODIES

One suicide. One cold-blooded murder. Are they connected? And who’s really pulling the strings in the small Swedish town of Gavrik?

TWO COINS

Black Grimberg liquorice coins cover the murdered man’s eyes. The hashtag #Ferryman starts to trend as local people stock up on ammunition.

TWO WEEKS

Tuva Moodyson, deaf reporter at the local paper, has a fortnight to investigate the deaths before she starts her new job in the south. A blizzard moves in. Residents, already terrified, feel increasingly cut-off. Tuva must go deep inside the Grimberg factory to stop the killer before she leaves town for good. But who’s to say the Ferryman will let her go?

It’s not very often that a character sticks in your mind quite like Tuva Moodyson, so it’s safe to say that straight after finishing DARK PINES, I was keen beans to get right back into Tuva’s life in RED SNOW.

Time has since passed since Tuva published her report on the Medusa Murders. A story which has opened opportunities for her and is due to move to a new job. In her final weeks before moving, a local business owner is witnessed to have committed suicide at the local liquorice factory. It is only when Tuva starts to dig a little deeper with the help of ghost-writer David Holmqvist does she discover a family with more secrets than employees!

The Grimberg family were fascinating to me. A grandmother, mother and daughter. Three generations of the same blood line, yet all three with their own very different personalities whilst living together in the factory. Each of them suffering from their own grief but trying to make the best of a bad lot. Will writes each character with such detail and care, whilst not enough to bore the reader, but to spark further interest that you want to know more!

I couldn’t help of thinking of the slow burning mysteries you become glued to in the likes of shows like Midsommer Murders where in a small town where everyone knows everyone and when investigating a crime, the threads start to unravel. Before you start to understand one truth, another thread unravels. Come the end of the book, you are stood over a ball of wool, wondering what to do next!

I shall sit here and catch my breath while I wait for Will to deliver us the next chapter in Tuva’s story. I’ll be waiting…maybe not patiently….but I’ll be waiting!

A big thank you to Point Blank Books & Will Dean for gifting me a copy of RED SNOW. Despite what some may believe, this review has not been swayed in light of this!

You can buy RED SNOW (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #2) from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

-S.

#IncidentReport | #BookReview | DARK PINES (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #1) by Will Dean @willrdean (December 7th 2017, Point Blank Books @PtBlankBks @Oneworldnews)

DARK PINES (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #1) by Will Dean
7th December 2017, Point Blank Books

An isolated Swedish town.

A deaf reporter terrified of nature.

A dense spruce forest overdue for harvest. 

A pair of eyeless hunters found murdered in the woods.

It’s week one of the Swedish elk hunt and the sound of gunfire is everywhere. When Tuva Moodyson investigates the story that could make her career she stumbles on a web of secrets that knit Gavrik town together. Are the latest murders connected to the Medusa killings twenty years ago? Is someone following her? Why take the eyes? Tuva must face her demons and venture deep into the woods to stop the killer and write the story. And then get the hell out of Gavrik.

DARK PINES was one of those books I saw being heavily reviewed and spoken about in late 2017 across the bloggerverse and one I was more than interested in. As with most bookworms, it is sometimes impossible to read everything on your TBR straight away 😦 With the upcoming release of RED SNOW – the sequel to DARK PINES due in January, I knew I had to pull my finger out!

With Melbourne starting a rather hot summer, I welcomed the cold and wintery setting of rural Sweden. The town surrounded by woodland, ice and snow. Even in 30+ degree weather, the descriptions alone of the town were enough for my imagination to take me there and feel the same chills as Tuva.

Tuva Moodyson is a special character in that you don’t encounter many like her in crime fiction. A young deaf woman working for the local paper in order to build her portfolio in the hope of working for larger publications. When the body is discovered in the woods, with the eyes removed – Tuva sees this as her opportunity to put her all into the story and uncover the truth. She is a strong willed and determined character, however we get to see the softness she possesses in how she interacts with the townsfolk and her own mother.

If you are into gritty Nordic Noir with claustrophobic settings and unreliable characters, then DARK PINES is a must read!

A big thank you to Point Blank Books & Will Dean for gifting me a copy of DARK PINES. Despite what some may believe, this review has not been swayed in light of this!

You can buy DARK PINES (A Tuva Moodyson Mystery #1) from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

-S.

#BlogTour| #BookReview | #IncidentReport| BIG SISTER (Varg Veum) by Gunnar Staalesen (Translation by Don Bartlett) ‏(June 20th 2018, Orenda Books @Orendabooks)

Welcome to my stop on this Blog Tour for the release of BIG SISTER, the next novel featuring Norwegian Private Investigator; Varg Veum by Gunnar Staalesen.

I would like to say that it is truly my pleasure to be invited onto this blog tour! Particular thanks to Anne Cater, Karen @ Orenda Books and of course Gunnar Staalesen who gifted me an early copy of BIG SISTER. I am forever grateful and promise that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 6.10.34 am

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

Varg Veum receives a surprise visit in his office. A woman introduces herself as his half-sister, and she has a job for him. Her god-daughter, a 19-year-old trainee nurse from Haugesund, moved from her apartment in Bergen two weeks ago.

Since then no one has heard anything from her. She didn’t leave an address. She doesn’t answer her phone. And the police refuse to take her case seriously.

Veum’s investigation uncovers a series of carefully covered-up crimes and pent-up hatreds, and the trail leads to a gang of extreme bikers on the hunt for a group of people whose dark deeds are hidden by the anonymity of the Internet. And then things get personal.

So, want to know what I thought?

WOW! I was ready for that! I have been reading a fair amount of contemporary romance of late (too much crime fiction make Sooz a little fuzzy headed) and I was ready to get my head back into the world of Noir and BIG SISTER was EXACTLY what I needed in my life!

After WOLVES IN THE DARK I continue to find it refreshing that Veum is not a sprightly young thirty-something man who displays quick reflexes and is able to acrobat himself out of any murky situation! No. Veum is in his sixties for startes. As such behaves as a sixty year old. He hurts. He sasses and is straight talking, which as a reader gets me excited to read what he can possibly get himself into next and when he does, how will he tackle it.

Taking on a missing persons case may sound simple enough, but as with most stories like this, once you start poking around and asking questions, separate stories and characters begin to appear from the woodwork. Gunnar’s writing pace allows for the reader to fully digest each of the characters and their own back stories, allowing us to form the bigger picture before we learn the conclusion at the end of the book.

BIG SISTER is an intrique web of lies, secrets, deceit and unspoken truths. It’s the classic story of pulling at a thread and seeing the whole thing unravel, but what Gunnar and Don have been able to do is allow the unravelling happen at a speed in which we can really feel everything come undone. It’s a particular credit to Don in his translation for English readers to truly feel Gunnar’s intention with this story.

I’m certainly looking forward to reading who comes knocking at Veum’s door next!

TL DR; It’s dead good. You should go buy this book yeah! 🙂


About GUNNAR STAALESEN;

Granite Noir Fest 2017

Gunnar Staalesen was born in Bergen, Norway in 1947. He made his debut at the age of 22 with Seasons of Innocence and in 1977 he published the first book in the Varg Veum series. He is the author of over 20 titles, which have been published in 24 countries and sold over four million copies.

Twelve film adaptations of his Varg Veum crime novels have appeared since 2007, starring the popular Norwegian actor Trond Epsen Seim. Staalesen, who has won three Golden Pistols (including the Prize of Honour), lives in Bergen with his wife. When Prince Charles visited Bergen, Staalesen was appointed his official tour guide.

There is a life-sized statue of Varg Veum in the centre of Bergen, and a host of Varg Veum memorabilia for sale. We Shall Inherit the Wind and Where Roses Never Die were both international bestsellers.

 

BIG SISTER is available now through the following outlets (but there are MANY others! Support local where you can!);

Waterstones | Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Book Depository

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs who participated in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

Screen Shot 2018-06-13 at 6.11.57 am

 

#BlogTour| #BookReview | #IncidentReport | BLUE NIGHT (Chastity Riley) by Simone Buchholz @ohneKlippo @FwdTranslations (February 28th 2018, Orenda Books @OrendaBooks)

Welcome to my stop on this Blog Tour for the release of BLUE NIGHT by Simone Buchholz.

I would like to say that it is truly my pleasure to be invited onto this blog tour! Particular thanks to Anne Cater, Orenda Books and of course Simone Buchholz who gifted me an early copy of BLUE NIGHT. I am forever grateful and promise that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

Blue Night cover final

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

After convicting a superior for corruption and shooting off a gangster’s crown jewels, the career of Hamburg’s most hard-bitten state prosecutor, Chastity Riley, has taken a nose dive: she has been transferred to the tedium of witness protection to prevent her making any more trouble.

However, when she is assigned to the case of an anonymous man lying under police guard in hospital – almost every bone in his body broken, a finger cut off, and refusing to speak in anything other than riddles – Chastity’s instinct for the big, exciting case kicks in. Using all her powers of persuasion, she soon gains her charge’s confidence, and finds herself on the trail to Leipzig, a new ally, and a whole heap of lethal synthetic drugs.

When she discovers that a friend and former colleague is trying to bring down Hamburg’s Albanian mafia kingpin single-handedly, it looks like Chas Riley’s dull life on witness protection really has been short-lived…

Fresh, fiendishly fast-paced and full of devious twists and all the hard-boiled poetry and acerbic wit of the best noir, Blue Night marks the stunning start of a brilliant new crime series, from one of Germany’s bestselling authors.

So, want to know what I thought?;

For starters, this is straight up one of the most intriguing books I’ve had the pleasure of reading! I admit that I struggled at the beginning…. The format of this book is short, snappy paragraphs which jump between scenes so quick that it makes your head spin…. but what a thrill it was!

We get a glimpse into each character through snippet flashbacks. Only a couple of sentances to help capture the mood/feeling of what each character is experiencing in the past. It gives us just enough to buy into the story, but leaves us hanging and with that air of mystery.

BLUE NIGHT is a relatively short read at a little under 200 pages (paperback edition), but don’t let the length of this book fool you into thinking the quality of the writing is anything less than excellence. This is also a credit to Rachel Ward who in my opinion has translated this work beautifully.

I imagine it’s going to be a long time before I read something quite as extroadinary as BLUE NIGHT.

About Simone Bulchholz;

Simone Buchholz Picture

Simone Buchholz was born in Hanau in 1972. At university, she studied Philosophy and Literature, worked as a waitress and a columnist, and trained to be a journalist at the prestigious Henri-Nannen-School in Hamburg.

In 2016, Simone Buchholz was awarded the Crime Cologne Award as well as the second Place of the German Crime Fiction Prize for Blue Night, which was number one on the KrimiZEIT Best of Crime List for months.

Simone lives in Sankt Pauli, in the heart of Hamburg, with her husband and son.

You can buy BLUE NIGHT from the following booksellers (however, there are MANY more!!)

Amazon (US) | Amazon (UK) | Book Depository | Waterstones

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

BLUE NIGHT Blog Tour Poster

#BlogTour| #BookReview | KILLED (Henning Juul #5) by Thomas Enger @EngerThomas (February 15th 2018, Orenda Books @OrendaBooks)

Welcome to my stop on this Blog Tour for the release of the final book in the Henning Juul series; KILLED by Thomas Enger

I would like to say that I am blown away to be invited onto this blog tour! Particular thanks to Anne Cater, Orenda Books and of course the wonderful Thomas Enger who gifted me an early copy of KILLED. I am forever grateful and promise that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

KILLED+VIS+2

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

SOMEONE HAS TO DIE…

Henning Juul sits in a boat on a dark lake. A man with a gun sits
opposite him. At the man’s feet is a body that will be soon be dumped into the water.

Henning knows that the same fate awaits him. And he knows that it’s his own fault.

Who started the fire that killed Henning’s young son? How is his sister, Trine, involved? Most importantly, who can be trusted?

Packed with tension and unexpected twists, Killed is the long-awaited finale of the internationally renowned series featuring conflicted,
disillusioned but always dogged crime reporter Henning Juul, and one of the most chilling, dark and moving crime thrillers you may ever read.

So, you want to know what I think?

If it wasn’t for the fear of destroying it – I would have launched my Kindle across the room once I finished KILLED. It is THAT good! I devoured this book in less than 48 hours and I wish I hadn’t with the knowledge that this is the last we will read of Henning. (Unless Thomas has a change of heart and decides to bring him back…I’ll be ready!)

Henning’s story – the twists, the turns, the scandal of everyone that was involved. I’ve not enjoyed a series like this so much since THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO! The trail of deception runs deep and you find yourself doubting everyone!

The ending of this story shocked me, but then felt right. It was the culmination of everything Henning has been through to discover what actually happened the night his son was cruelly taken from him. We also understand the ‘why’ and it’s a pretty hard pill to swallow.

Thomas has an exceptional way with words and with the talent of Kari Dickson’s translation – I was ‘there’. I felt all of the betrayal, the anguish, the pain….and not just from Henning. Nora’s journey in KILLED is a sad one as she experiences a pain that some people can only imagine.

There are talks of the Henning Juul series being made into a TV series! I for one cannot wait to see how Henning’s story will translated to screen and hope that any producer in their right mind will ensure his story is portrayed in the right way!

About Thomas Enger;

DSC_0013

Thomas Enger (b. 1973) is a former journalist. He made his debut with the crime novel Burned (Skinndød) in 2009, which became an international sensation before publication. Burned is the first in a series of 5 books about the journalist Henning Juul, which delves into the depths of Oslo’s underbelly, skewering the corridors of dirty politics and nailing the fast-moving world of 24-hour news.

Rights to the series have been sold to 26 countries to date. In 2013 Enger published his first book for young adults, a dark fantasy thriller called The Evil Legacy, for which he won the U-prize (best book Young Adult). Enger also composes music, and he lives in Oslo.

You can buy KILLED from the following booksellers (but obvs you can get it at other awesome booksellers too!);

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Waterstones | Book Depository

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

Killed Blog Tour Poster

#BlogTour| #BookReview | SNARE by Lilja Sigurdardóttir @lilja1972 (September 12th 2017, Orenda Books @OrendaBooks)

Welcome to my stop on this Blog Tour for SNARE – the lastest novel from the rather excellent

I would like to say that I am blown away to be invited onto this blog tour! Particular thanks to Anne Cater, Karen Sullivan at Orenda Books and of course the fantastic Lilja Sigurdardottir who gifted me an early copy of SNARE. I am forever grateful and promise that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

Screen Shot 2017-10-12 at 06.04.10

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

After a messy divorce, attractive young mother Sonia is struggling to provide for herself and keep custody of her son. With her back to the wall, she resorts to smuggling cocaine into Iceland, and finds herself caught up in a ruthless criminal world.

As she desperately looks for a way out of trouble, she must pit her wits against her nemesis, Bragi, a customs officer, whose years of experience frustrate her new and evermore daring strategies. Things become even more complicated when Sonia embarks on a relationship with a woman, Agla. Once a high-level bank executive, Agla is currently being prosecuted in the aftermath the Icelandic financial crash.

Set in a Reykjavík still covered in the dust of the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption, and with a dark, fast-paced and chilling plot and intriguing characters, Snare is an outstandingly original and sexy Nordic crime thriller.

 

So, you want to know what I think?

How much could I relate to Sonia when trying to practice airport etiquette in trying to look as ‘normal’ as possible. At which point you then look MAJORLY suspicious, so try to hide it further?! There is just something about being in an airport which gives me the jeebies. I can only *just* start to imagine how Sonia must have felt with a ‘special’ item on her person!

Having that tension already set made SNARE more of a page turner than I already though it would be! A perfect tale of cat and mouse between Sonia and Bragi; the customs offer determined to bring Sonia to justice. This was a fast paced read and easily a story you can read in one sitting, but being fast paced did not take away from the plot and the characters development throughout.

SNARE is a pefect example of how Lilja and Nordic writers just get it. They know how to construct a gripping story, how to set the scene and keep the readers hooked from the first page. They know how to make the reader feel nervous, on edge and uncomfortable – all whilst telling some of the best stories.

I am certainly looking forward to reading the next instalment in this series and seeing where Sonia’s story takes us next!

About Lilja Sigurdardottir;
Lilja Sigurðard.

Icelandic crime-writer Lilja Sigurdardóttir was born in the town of Akranes in 1972 and raised in Mexico, Sweden, Spain and Iceland.

An award-winning playwright, Lilja has written four crime novels, with Snare, the first in a new series, hitting bestseller lists worldwide. The film rights have been bought by Palomar Pictures in California.

Lilja has a background in education and has worked in evaluation and quality control for preschools in recent years. She lives in Reykjavík with her partner.

You can buy SNARE from the following booksellers (but obvs you can get it at other awesome booksellers too!);

Amazon (UK) | Amazon | Book Depository | Waterstones

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

snare blog poster 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#BookTag | #GoodreadsMonday 11/09/2017 |THE SNOWMAN by Jo Nesbo (November 6th 2014, Vintage Books @vintagebooks)

Title: THE SNOWMAN (Harry Hole #7)
Author:
Jo Nesbo
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Publication Date: November 6th, 2014 (First Published in 2007)

Screen Shot 2017-09-01 at 13.08.22

The night the first snow falls a young boy wakes to find his mother gone. He walks through the silent house, but finds only wet footprints on the stairs. In the garden looms a solitary figure: a snowman bathed in cold moonlight, its black eyes glaring up at the bedroom windows. Round its neck is his mother’s pink scarf.

Inspector Harry Hole is convinced there is a link between the disappearance and a menacing letter he received some months earlier. As Harry and his team delve into unsolved case files, they discover that an alarming number of wives and mothers have gone missing over the years. When a second woman disappears Harry’s suspicions are confirmed: he is a pawn in a deadly game. For the first time in his career Harry finds himself confronted with a serial killer operating on his turf, a killer who will drive him to the brink of insanity.

It’s never ideal to bounce around a series, as you can lose key moments which really are integral to the development of plots and characters. However, when you hear that a movie based on this book is due out pretty soon staring that there Michael Fassbender – jumping around a series is certainly justified!

THE SNOWMAN is the seventh book in the Harry Hole series. I have only read the first book; THE BAT so far and I was blown away by the writing style and how the story grabbed me from the first page. I have heard great things about THE SNOWMAN, so I cannot wait to get stuck in!

This tag was bought to life by the wonderful Lauren at Page Turner 20

Be sure to go and check out her page for more information on how to get involved!

-S.

 

#BlogTour | #BookReview – #WOLVESINTHEDARK by Gunnar Staalesen #GunnarStaalesen (June 15th 2017, Orenda Books @OrendaBooks)

It is my pleasure to be closing out this Blog Tour! I would of course, as every #BlogTour like to thank the team at Orenda Books, Anne Carter and Gunnar Staalesen for gifting me an early copy of WOLVES IN THE DARK.  I am forever grateful and ensure that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

Reeling from the death of his great love, Karin, Varg Veum’s life has descended into a self-destructive spiral of alcohol, lust, grief and blackouts. When traces of child pornography are found on his computer, he’s accused of being part of a pedophile ring and thrown into a prison cell.

There, he struggles to sift through his past to work out who is responsible for planting the material . . . and who is seeking the ultimate revenge. When a chance to escape presents itself, Varg finds himself on the run in his hometown of Bergen. With the clock ticking and the police on his tail, Varg takes on his hardest—and most personal—case yet.

wolves in the dark cover

So, you want to know what I think?

There is something special about Nordic authors in the sense that they are able to create pretty outstanding novels within a series – but each of them can stand on their own. WOLVES IN THE DARK is another great example of an established series and characters, but we don’t lose any of the story. I sometimes feel that this is where some UK/US authors lack.

As the blurb suggests, we are thrown straight into the story as our leading man; Varg Veum is arrested for possessing child pornography.  Veum is desperate to clear his name and discover who is behind the crimes. What Veum is not prepared for is the vast web of which has been spun in order to protect individuals from a wider network of perpetrators. This made more difficult when Veum has trouble remembering certain events which could provide key detail.

One thing I tend to find with Nordic authors also is that no subject is taboo, especially the subject of child abuse. Gunnar Staalesen was able to write about these crimes in such a way that don’t shy away from the ugliness of the situation and tend to tackle it head on – without the need to be overtly graphic. The reader can paint their own pictures while reading the story.

The story is pretty fast paced and we are keeping up with the action taking place while Veum stalks around his home town, interviewing key players, whilst trying to piece together the puzzle as to his arrest. We are left on a pretty big cliff-hanger, which I am sure has been left this way intentionally in order to set the scene for the next novel! A cracking read!
About GUNNAR STAALESEN:

Granite Noir Fest 2017

Gunnar Staalesen was born in Bergen, Norway in 1947. He made his debut at the age of 22 with Seasons of Innocence and in 1977 he published the first book in the Varg Veum series. He is the author of over 20 titles, which have been published in 24 countries and sold over four million copies.

Twelve film adaptations of his Varg Veum crime novels have appeared since 2007, starring the popular Norwegian actor Trond Epsen Seim. Staalesen, who has won three Golden Pistols (including the Prize of Honour), lives in Bergen with his wife. When Prince Charles visited Bergen, Staalesen was appointed his official tour guide.

There is a life-sized statue of Varg Veum in the centre of Bergen, and a host of Varg Veum memorabilia for sale. We Shall Inherit the Wind and Where Roses Never Die were both international bestsellers.

WOLVES IN THE DARK is available now through the following outlets;

Waterstones | Amazon (UK) | Amazon | Book Depository

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs who participated in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

wolves blog tour poster

#BlogTour – #FAITHLESS by Kjell Ola Dahl #OsloDetectives (April 15th 2017, Orenda Books @OrendaBooks) #NordicNoir

I would of course, as every #BlogTour like to thank the team at Orenda Books for gifting me an early copy of FAITHLESS. I am forever grateful and and promise that the review below is 100% honest and of my own views.

To kick off, we have the “blurb” for the book;

Oslo detectives Gunnarstranda and Frølich are back and this time, it’s personal… When the body of a woman turns up in a dumpster, scalded and wrapped in plastic, Inspector Frank Frølich is shocked to discover that he knows her and their recent meetings may hold the clue to her murder.

As he ponders the tragic events surrounding her death, Frølich’s colleague Gunnarstranda investigates a disturbingly similar cold case involving the murder of a young girl in northern Norway and Frølich is forced to look into his own past to find the answers – and the killer – before he strikes again.

So, you want to know what I think?

Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 06.24.26

One thing I will be forever grateful to Orenda (and in part Karen!) is how many new authors they have opened my eyes to! Karen and the team at Orenda deserve nothing but praise for bringing us some fantastic domestic and international fiction. Authors and books that I may not have picked up otherwise! I’m pretty sure there is an award or medal with Orenda’s name on it somewhere. If not, maybe I should make one?

After reading some pretty fast paced crime novels this year, I think I was expecting FAITHLESS to be just as fast – but that wasn’t the case. This book allowed me to slow my brain down and actually get into the story. It had the same effect on me as RUPTURE by Ragnar Jonasson.

Once again I have picked up a book which is further on into a series, but FAITHLESS can be enjoyed as a standalone novel and here is why….

What I always enjoy reading in Nordic Noir is that sense of dark, isolating conditions. As a reader, you can’t help but feel uneasy and sometimes uncomfortable as you feel that sense of claustrophobia throughout. That mixed in with the slow burning nature of the story. in FAITHLESS – it is a great combination that it seems only Nordic Noir novels can get away with.

One thing I really enjoyed in FAITHLESS is the dynamic between the two leading detectives; Gunnarstranda and Frølich. They have this quirky, comedic banter which you don’t tend to read that much in other police procedurals, which I think this is also a trait of some Nordic Noir novels. It allows us as readers to get to know the characters and become invested in them, concerned for what is in store and how they will react.

THAT ENDING THOUGH! Just when you think you know how a book is going to end, and the writer decides “hehe, that would be too easy” and then blows your mind! Ola Dahl performed this manoeuvre beautifully. Orenda know exactly what they are doing when they release books of this calibre!

I think I need to go and lie down in a dark room and recover from my book hangover….

About KJELL OLA DAHL;

Dahl-Kjell-Ola_Foto-Rolf-M-Aagaard
One of the fathers of the Nordic Noir genre, Kjell Ola Dahl was born in 1958 in Gjøvik. He made his debut in 1993, and has since published eleven novels, the most prominent of which is a series of police procedurals cum psychological thrillers featuring investigators Gunnarstranda and Frølich.

In 2000 he won the Riverton Prize for The Last Fix and he won both the prestigious Brage and Riverton Prizes for The Courier in 2015. His work has been published in 14 countries, and he lives in Oslo.

FAITHLESS is out now and can be purchased at the following outlets;

Amazon (UK) | Waterstones | Amazon.com | Kobo

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all of the action across Twitter!

-S.

faithless blog tour

 

#BlogTour #CURSED by Thomas Enger @EngerThomas) (@OrendaBooks)

As always, I would like to start by saying a huge huge THANK YOU to Karen @ Orenda Books for allowing me an early copy of CURSED. I am extremely grateful and promise that the review below is 100% honest and my own views.

So first off, we have “the blurb” for the book:

What secret would you kill to protect?

When Hedda Hellberg fails to return from a retreat in Italy, where she has been grieving for her recently dead father, her husband discovers that his wife’s life is tangled in mystery. Hedda never left Oslo, the retreat has no record of her and, what’s more, she appears to be connected to the death of an old man, gunned down on the first day of the hunting season in the depths of the Swedish forests.

Henning Juul becomes involved in the case when his ex-­‐wife joins in the search for the missing woman, and the estranged pair find themselves enmeshed both in the murky secrets of one of Sweden’s wealthiest families, and in the painful truths surrounding the death of their own son. With the loss of his son to deal with, as well as threats to his own life and to that of his ex-­‐wife, Juul is prepared to risk everything to uncover a sinister maze of secrets that ultimately leads to the dark heart of European history.

Taut, chilling and unputdownable, Cursed is the fourth in the internationally renowned series featuring conflicted, disillusioned by always dogged crime reporter Henning Juul, and marks the return of one of Norway’s finest crime writers.

So, you want to know what I think?

I’m starting to wonder whether Orenda are capable of releasing “okay” fiction. This is the fourth book of theirs I have read in 2017 and I am not exaggerating or embellishing the truth when I say I have enjoyed every one! CURSED was no exception!

Firstly, CURSED is the fourth installment following our leading character, Henning Juul. Again, I was dubious in starting a series so far down the line – but after some encouragement from Abby over at Crime By The Book (and also with some homework on the characters) I jumped in!.

WOW. Wow. Wow! Those who know me know I reserve my 5 Stars for truly outstanding writing and a book that makes me feel incredibly giddy thinking about it and turns my reviews into waffling nonsense. CURSED. IS. THAT. BOOK! We are only on 15th February. There are 319 days left of 2017 and I’ve already given TWO five star reviews! CURSED deserves this rating wholeheartedly.

CURSED is a prime example of a story that ideally should be enjoyed as part of a series, as you then have that deeper understanding of the characters and what they have been through and how they have ended up in their current situation. However, saying that – CURSED can also be enjoyed as a standalone novel (as I have) as Enger has written this book in a way that gives a new reader enough information to aid the flow of the story.

This is a wonderfully written book from Enger highlights how even the most polished looking families can harbor deep secrets that eventually tear them apart. Each member of the family in question was given their own “15 minutes of fame” so there was no leaning to one character or the other until the end of the book. When the drama comes to a head, the story of how each family member plays their individual part is intricately weaved together like a piece of fine tapestry, it makes you stand book and admire what has been created.

Once again, Orenda are responsible for my ever growing TBR, my lack of sleep, but more importantly introducing me to some exceptional authors.

My aim is to now visit the first novels in this series – start from the beginning and understand more about Henning and Nora’s relationship and how it went so terribly wrong for them.

Do we also need to talk about that ending though?!

About THOMAS ENGER:

Thomas Enger (b. 1973) is a former journalist. He made his debut with the crime novel Burned (Skinndød) in 2009, which became an international sensation before publication. Burned is the first in a series of 5 books about the journalist Henning Juul, which delves into the depths of Oslo’s underbelly, skewering the corridors of dirty politics and nailing the fast-moving world of 24-hour news.

Rights to the series have been sold to 26 countries to date. In 2013 Enger published his first book for young adults, a dark fantasy thriller called The Evil Legacy, for which he won the U-prize (best book Young Adult). Enger also composes music, and he lives in Oslo.

CURSED is out now and can be purchased at the following outlets;

Amazon (UK); http://amzn.to/2kiXI0g
Waterstones; http://bit.ly/2kz6khX

-S.

Be sure to check out the other blogs participating in this Blog Tour. See below for further details and be sure to follow all the action across Twitter!