blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller, Nordic noir

Winterkill by Ragnar Jónasson – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Easter weekend is approaching, and snow is gently falling in Siglufjörður, the

northernmost town in Iceland, as crowds of tourists arrive to visit the majestic ski slopes.

Ari Thór Arason is now a police inspector, but he’s separated from his girlfriend, who lives in Sweden with their three-year-old son. A family reunion is planned for the holiday, but a violent blizzard is threatening and there is an unsettling chill in the air.

Three days before Easter, a nineteen-year-old local girl falls to her death from the balcony of a house on the main street. A perplexing entry in her diary suggests that this may not be an accident, and when an old man in a local nursing home writes ‘She was murdered’ again and again on the wall of his room, there is every suggestion that something more sinister lies at the heart of her death…

As the extreme weather closes in, cutting the power and access

to Siglufjörður, Ari Thór must piece together the puzzle to reveal a horrible truth … one that will leave no one unscathed.

Chilling, claustrophobic and disturbing, Winterkill marks the startling conclusion to the million-copy bestselling Dark Iceland series and cements Ragnar Jónasson as one of the most exciting authors in crime fiction.

MY REVIEW 

# 6 in the Dark Iceland series, it can be read as a stand-alone, (but you are missing a fantastic series.)

Set in Iceland, Ari Thor Is now a Police  Inspector and is getting to know his new team. His relationship has broken down and he is living alone, but he is looking forward to a visit from his ex and their son over Easter.

When the body of a teenage girl is found at the base of an apartment block, it is believed she jumped to her death…….but as Ari looks into her life, he begins to believe something else happened to her.

And so the investigation begins.

This is not a fast paced thriller, it is a low burn classic crime thriller, with plenty of twists and red herrings to keep you utterly hooked from start to finish.

Ari is a troubled man and while he has now settled in the town of Siglufjódour, there is still a feeling of him living on the edge.

Mr Jónasson’s amazing writing gives this tale a dark feeling of claustrophobia, of the oppressiveness of a blizzard and the cold practically seeps off the page.

With its clever, twisty plot and great characters this is a must read for any fan of Nordic Noir.  This is quite simply an outstanding read. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Winterkill.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Icelandic crime writer Ragnar Jónasson was born in Reykjavík, and currently works as

a lawyer, while teacher copyright law at the Reykjavík University Law School. In the past, he’s worked in TV and radio, including as a news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service. Before embarking on a writing career, Ragnar translated fourteen Agatha Christie novels into Icelandic, and has had several short stories published in German, English and Icelandic literary magazines. Ragnar set up the first overseas chapter of the CWA (Crime Writers’ Association) in Reykjavík, and is co-founder of the International crime-writing festival Iceland Noir. Ragnar’s debut thriller, Snowblind became an almost instant bestseller when it was published in June 2015n with Nightblind (winner of the Dead Good Reads Most Captivating Crime in Translation Award) and then Blackout, Rupture and Whiteout following soon after. To date, Ragnar Jónasson has written five novels in the Dark Iceland series, which has been optioned for TV by On the Corner. He lives in Reykjavík with his wife and two daughters.

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller, Nordic noir

Fallen Angels by Gunnar Staalsen – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When Bergen PI Varg Veum finds himself at the funeral of a former

classmate on a sleet-grey December afternoon, he’s unexpectedly reunited with his old friend Jakob – guitarist of the once-famous 1960s rock band The Harpers – and his estranged wife, Rebecca, Veum’s first love.

Their rekindled friendship is thrown into jeopardy by the discovery of a horrific murder, and Veum is forced to dig deep into his own adolescence and his darkest memories, to find a motive … and a killer. Tense, vivid and deeply unsettling, Fallen Angels is the spellbinding, award-winning thriller that secured Gunnar Staalesen’s reputation as one of the world’s foremost crime writers.

MY REVIEW 

Varg Veum is a PI, attending the funeral of a friend, memories of the past are recalled. 

There is a murder to solve in the present day, but Varg’s past keeps coming to the fore.

This is a tale of Varg’s past, his friendships, love and secrets that have made him the person he is now. 

There is an underlying feeling of tension which gives this an unsettling edge as we peer into the darker side of human behaviour.

At times quite harrowing, this emotion packed thriller is a look into the dark underbelly of society, those that live in it and the effect this has on those who deal with the aftermath. Both brutal and melancholy, this dark thriller is utterly compelling.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Fallen Angels.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Granite Noir fest 2017. Gunnar Staalesen.

One of the fathers of Nordic Noir, Gunnar Staalesen was born in

Bergen, Norway, in 1947. He made his debut at the age of twenty-two with Seasons of Innocence and in 1977 he published the first book in the Varg Veum series. He is the author of over twenty titles, which have been published in twenty-four 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 Espen Seim. Staalesen has won three Golden Pistols (including the Prize of Honour) and Where Roses Never Die won the 2017 Petrona Award for Nordic Crime Fiction, and Big Sister was shortlisted in 2019. He lives with his wife in Bergen.

blog tour, Book reviews, Gothic horror, Nordic noir

The Nesting by CJ Cooke – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

The grieving widower. The motherless daughters. A beautiful house in the woods. And a nanny came to save the day….

So what if Lexi isn’t telling the truth about who she is? Escaping to the remote snows of Norway was her lifeline. And all she wanted was to be a part of their lives.

But soon, isolated in that cold, creaking house in the middle of ancient, whispering woods, Lexi’s fairytale starts to turn into a nightmare.

With darkness creeping in from the outside, Lexi’s fears are deepening. Lexi knows she needs to protect the children in her care.

But protect them from what?

MY REVIEW 

This starts with the death of Aurelia. Was it suicide? 

Then Lexi attempts to take her life, but is saved by a friend. Her boyfriend then leaves her.

She hears of a job opportunity in Norway, so she steals the identity of another woman and applies to be a Nanny.

She gets the job and travels to Norway to be Nanny to Tom’s children. Tom was Aurelias husband.

Lexi feels she is living a fairytale, but then the sad lady begins to appear and things get dark and creepy.

I found The Nesting to be an atmospheric and downright creepy gothic thriller with some really scary moments…..one to read with the lights on! ……a thoroughly entertaining read.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Nesting.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

C.J. Cooke is an acclaimed, award-winning poet, novelist and academic with numerous other publications under the name of Carolyn Jess-Cooke. Born in Belfast, she has a PhD in Literature from Queen’s University, Belfast, and is currently Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow, where she researches creative writing interventions for mental health.

She also founded the Stay-At-Home Festival.

#TheNesting @CJessCooke

blog tour, Book reviews, Nordic noir

The Seven Doors by Agnes Ravatn – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

One of Norway’s most distinguished voices, Agnes Ravatn’s first novel to be published in the UK was The Bird Tribunal. It won an English PEN Translation Award, was shortlisted for the Dublin Literary Award and the Petrona Award, and was adapted for a BBC Book at Bedtime. She returns now with a dark, powerful and deeply disturbing psychological thriller about family, secrets and dangerous curiosity…

University professor Nina is at a turning point. Her work seems increasingly irrelevant, her doctor husband is never home, relations with her adult daughter Ingeborg are strained, and their beautiful house is scheduled for demolition.

When Ingeborg decides to move into another house they own, things take a very dark turn. The young woman who rents it disappears, leaving behind her son, the day after Nina and Ingeborg pay her a visit.

With few clues, the police enquiry soon grinds to a halt, but Nina has an inexplicable sense of guilt. Unable to rest, she begins her own investigation, but as she pulls on the threads of the case, it seems her discoveries may have very grave consequences for her and her family.

MY REVIEW 

Nina and her husband, Mads, are having to move home as their house is in the way of a new construction and is under a compulsory purchase order.

Their daughter, Ingeborg, has an infestation of silverfish in her and wants to move out and into Mads aunt’s old house that he rents out. But there is a tenant living there….

So Nina and Ingeborg drive just to have a look at the house, but Ingeborg, who is oblivious to anyone else’s feelings, practically forces her way into the home and makes Mari feel very uncomfortable. As a result, Mads gets a message that Mari is moving out……but then she disappears, leaving her young son behind.

Nina wonders if Ingeborg is responsible and begins her own investigation….but this brings to light family secrets..

This is not a police investigation but just Nina’s, her life is in upheaval and she tries to find out what happened to Mari.

The Seven Doors has a steady pace, with lots of detail about Nina’s life and marriage, but it also has an underlying, creeping tension that slowly builds and makes it a gripping read throughout. Fans of Nordic Noir are going to love this…

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Seven Doors. This is my honest and unbiased review.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Agnes Ravatn (b. 1983) is a Norwegian author and columnist. She made her literary début with the novel Week 53 (Veke 53) in 2007. Since then she has written three critically acclaimed and award-winning essay collections: Standing still (Stillstand), 2011, Popular Reading (Folkelesnad), 2011, and Operation self-discipline (Operasjon sjøldisiplin), 2014. In these works, Ravatn revealed a unique, witty voice and sharp eye for human fallibility. Her second novel, The Bird Tribunal (Fugletribuanlet), was an international bestseller translated into fifteen languages, winning an English PEN Award, shortlisting for the Dublin Literary Award, a WHSmith Fresh Talent pick and a BBC Book at Bedtime. It was also made into a successful play, which premiered in Oslo in 2015. Agnes lives with her family in the Norwegian countryside.

Book reviews, Crime thriller, Nordic noir

Sister by Kjell Ola Dahl – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Oslo detective Frølich searches for the mysterious sister of a young female asylum seeker, but when people start to die, everything points to an old case and a series of events that someone will do anything to hide… Suspended from duty, Detective Frølich is working as a private investigator, when his girlfriend’s colleague asks for his help with a female asylum seeker, who the authorities are about to deport. She claims to have a sister in Norway, and fears that returning to her home country will mean instant death.

Frølich quickly discovers the whereabouts of the young woman’s sister, but things become increasingly complex when she denies having a sibling, and Frølich is threatened off the case by the police. As the body count rises, it becomes clear that the answers lie in an old investigation, and the mysterious sister, who is now on the run…

A dark, chilling and up-to-the-minute Nordic Noir thriller, Sister is also a tense and well-plotted murder mystery with a moving tragedy at its heart, cementing Kjell Ola Dahl as one of the greatest crime writers of our generation.

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MY REVIEW 

Frank Frølich is a private investigator, while investigating a case of purloined goods he meets Matilde. She has a friend, Guri,  who needs help finding the missing sister of an asylum seeker. 

Frølich takes the case as a favour, but is then contacted by an author who is working on a new book about the immigration system and wants him to check the motives of those searching for the missing girl…

But, then things get dark, the bodies begin to pile up and the tension builds.

With an incredibly taut plot, that really keeps you guessing, such likeable characters and the topical storyline, this really is a totally compelling read. Nordic Noir at its very best.

Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

You can buy a copy here : https://amzn.to/3bHs9oJ

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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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. 

Book reviews, Crime thriller, Nordic noir, Psychlogical thriller

Death Deserved by Jørn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Oslo, 2018. Former long-distance runner Sonja Nordstrøm never shows at the launch of her controversial autobiography, Always Number One. 

When celebrity blogger Emma Ramm visits Nordstrøm’s home later that day, she finds the door unlocked and signs of a struggle inside. A bib with the number ‘one’ has been pinned to the TV.

Police officer Alexander Blix is appointed to head up the missing- persons investigation, but he still bears the emotional scars of a hostage situation nineteen years earlier, when he killed the father of a five-year-old girl. 

Traces of Nordstrøm soon show up at different locations, but the appearance of the clues appear to be carefully calculated … evidence of a bigger picture that he’s just not seeing…

Blix and Ramm soon join forces, determined to find and stop a merciless killer with a flair for the dramatic, and thirst for attention.

Trouble is, he’s just got his first taste of it…
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MY REVIEW 

Alexander Blix is an experienced police officer in Norway. He had been involved in a shooting 19 years before that still troubles him daily. 

When Emma Ramm, a journalist reports a missing person, the investigation begins.

Sonja Nordstrøm, a celebrity athlete and author of an explosive autobiography has disappeared….

But, more bodies start to be found, each with clues that link the victims in some way…leading them to believe there is more to come.

Emma and Blix are also linked by an event in their pasts, Blix feels an obligation to Emma and passes her information relating to the case for her to post her online news reports. But is this putting her in danger?

What follows in an incredible, gripping Nordic Noir thriller, with great likeable characters in Blix and Ramm. Full of emotion, fear and nail biting suspense in a race against time to catch a serial killer before he can complete his plan. I’m already waiting for the next in the series. Brilliantly dark and utterly compelling.

Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

You can preorder a copy here (released on 20 Feb) :   https://amzn.to/2SFbvyq

 

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

 

Jørn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger are the internationally bestselling Norwegian authors of the William Wisting and Henning Juul series respectively. Jørn Lier Horst first rose to literary fame with his No. 1 internationally bestselling William Wisting series. A former investigator in the Norwegian police, Horst imbues all his works with an unparalleled realism and suspense. Thomas Enger is the journalist-turned-author behind the internationally acclaimed and bestselling Henning Juul series. Enger’s trademark has become a darkly gritty voice paired with key social messages and tight plotting. Besides writing fiction for both adults and young adults, Enger also works as a music composer. Death Deserved is Jørn Lier Horst & Thomas Enger’s first co-written thriller.