Welcome along to The Quiet Knitter’s stop on the blog tour for Thomas Enger’s “Cursed”, I am delighted to share my review of this immensely brilliant thriller with you all.
Published: 15 February 2017
5 out of 5 stars
Copy provided by Orenda Publishing as part of the blog tour
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.
My Thoughts & Review:
When I started this book I didn’t realise this was actually the fourth book in the series following Henning Juul, it reads pretty spectacularly as a stand alone novel, but I have gone and bought the previous three so I can catch up on this wonderful character and the superb writing of Thomas Enger.
Nordic Noir has reached its pinnacle for me with this book, it is breathtakingly brilliant. Enger grabs his audience with a very dark and disturbing opening, the murder of man out walking his dog in the forest, and takes great care to ensure that the reader is kept gussing as to the connection between the murder victim and the main strands of the plot. The way in which he masterfully weaves a tangled plot together is something to behold. When reading this I kept wondering how it would all link up, where it was going but all the while enjoying the deliciously twisted writing. I am loathe to give away details, it’s cleverly crafted, well structured and all consuming.
Vivid descriptions of Oslo and the surrounding landscapes are mesmerising, I felt that I could conjure clear images from the details given. The characters are also incredibly detailed, readers cannot help but feel connected to Nora and Henning, there is a powerful bond between these two despite their relationship having been over for some time. The way in which Thomas Enger writes these characters, especially Henning, makes me desperate to find out more….so book 5 needs to be out pretty soon please!
With most translated novels there is the fear that something will be lost when transcribing from the author’s native language to English, but I have to say the pairing of Thomas Enger and Kari Dickson is something akin to genius! Dickson’s skills ensure that this novel reads as though it were originally written in English and none of the subtle nuances are lost. I am always in awe of the work translators do, and Kari Dickson is one that deserves much praise.
An immensely brilliant thriller from an author I will be watching closely from now on!
About the Author:
Thomas Enger (b. 1973) is a former journalist. He made his debut with the crime novel Burned (Skinndod) in 2009, which became aninternational 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.
Don’t forget to check out the other stops on the blog tour, there are some brilliant reviews and guest posts to read – why not check back on the previous days to catch up on what you might have missed too?