I have written before about my love for Scandinavian writing and authors. There is a special breed of them up north in the white cold winters that form the backdrop for so many of their books. As a lot of you know my favorite genre to read is crime and mysteries. In particular I enjoy Nordic Noir - that particular brand of murder mystery that the Scandinavians do so well. A bit edgy, sometimes gory but always tension filled right to the end. I was really happy to discover a new (for me) Nordic Noir writer recently.
Until Thy Wrath be Past by Asa Larsson
Wilma Persson and Simon Kyrö disappears on a Winters day while diving in a lake in the icy weather. When the first sign of Spring comes Wilma's body is found - and Wilma makes her first visit to Prosecutor Rebecka Martinsson who starts to investigate the case with Inspector Anna-Maria Mella.
The setting is small town northern Sweden with all the usual trappings of a rural community - be it in Sweden or South Africa. The community and how it functions form the background to the story. The story is partially told by Wilma herself and constantly switched between today and the past as the intrigue around it unfolds. Larsson uses this very effectively and gives very interesting background to the Swedish, Norwegian and German Nazi occupation during World War 2.
I thoroughly enjoyed the tension and complexity of the story and it is great to see two strong female protagonists . I got the idea that it might have been beneficial to have read the others in the series (this is number 4) to fully understand the emotional complexities they are both dealing with and that impacts on the background on the story.
As with a lot of the Nordic Noir books the area forms a big part of the story as does the climate and the cold and snow. What did stand out for me about Larsson's writing is that it holds a lot more emotion than any of the other Nordic Noir books I have read up to date. She taps into and expresses the emotions of her characters and have the reader involved in the emotions leading up to and following most events in the book.
A 9/10 for a great tension filled murder mystery. I will without a doubt find her other books and read them.