As a police team is called in to investigate a woman’s suicide at the Hólmsheiði prison outside Reykjavík, to detective Guðgeir Fransson it looks like a tragic but straightforward case.
It’s only afterwards that the pieces begin to fall into place and he takes a deeper interest in Kristín Kjarr’s troubled background, and why she had found herself in prison.
His search leads him to a series of brutal crimes committed twenty years before and the unexplained disappearance of the prime suspect, whose wealthy family closed ranks as every effort was made to keep skeletons securely hidden in closets – while the Reykjavík police struggle to deal with a spate of fresh attacks that bear all the hallmarks of a copycat.
‘A sinister story of fear an isolation told with imaginative flair. Mesmerising.’
‘The darker the secret, the harder to bury it. Compelling reading!’
Sólveig Pálsdóttir trained as an actor and has a background in the theatre, television and radio. In a second career she studied for degrees in literature and education, and has taught literature and linguistics, drama and public speaking, and has produced both radio programming and managed cultural events.
Her first novel appeared in Iceland in 2012 and went straight to the country’s bestseller list. She has written five novels featuring Reykjavík detective Guðgeir Fransson and a memoir, Klettaborgin, which was a 2020 hit in Iceland.
Silenced (Fjötrar) received the 2020 Drop of Blood award for the best Icelandic novel of the year and is Iceland’s nomination for the 2021 Glass key award for the best Nordic crime novel of the year.
Sólveig lives in Reykjavík.
I was engrossed in this from the start. The characters have moved on from where we last left them, and as is always good life seems to be moving gently along. Except it isn’t!
The main character is deeply layered and he is as flawed as some of the other people within the pages. Yet, his integrity wins out. I love him because he’s a flawed person, but he’s trying to do what he can.
A series of brutal rapes embroil him in the middle of a major investigation , and he is curious enough to want to follow a hunch from a conversation with his new neighbour.
This book oozes dark, deep Icelandic noir which is written to perfection and I was sad to put it down. Subliminal criminal pleasure!
Thanks for the advanced reading copy of this book to Corylus Books and the author.