I picked up another Scandi noir, this time, set in Norway. Really, their harsh winter landscapes with piles and piles of snow make for such good murder mystery backgrounds. I’m struggling with a blurb here, so I’ve lifted this straight from Goodreads:
“Snow has been falling on the village all winter long. It covers windows and piles up in front of doors. The sun rises late and sets early, and even during the day there is little to do but trade tales. This year everybody’s talking about Katri Kling and Anna Aemelin. Katri is a yellow-eyed outcast who lives with her simpleminded brother and a dog she refuses to name. She has no use for the white lies that smooth social intercourse, and she can see straight to the core of any problem. Anna, an elderly children’s book illustrator, appears to be Katri’s opposite: a respected member of the village, if an aloof one. Anna lives in a large empty house, venturing out in the spring to paint exquisitely detailed forest scenes. But Anna has something Katri wants, and to get it Katri will take control of Anna’s life and livelihood. By the time spring arrives, the two women are caught in a conflict of ideals that threatens to strip them of their most cherished illusions.”
I am not very sure what I felt about this book. It is a very well-written book. So much so that as a reader I was hooked even if no action was taking place. The descriptions of Anna’s ‘rabbit house’ of the dog with no name and of the boat ties the parts in quite effortlessly. Katri reminded me of Mrs Danvers, and that’s never a bad thing. But I was a little disappointed in the climax appearing almost at the very end. Then again, it is not a very long book. So it wasn’t like I had to wait ages for it. I finished the book in two evenings of reading so overall, I would recommend it as a trialling of this new author I haven’t read before.