Which is worse, trying to catch a cunning killer leaving decapitated women in the woods, or trying to tame an unconventional forensic psychiatrist that seems determined to go his own way?
The Oslo autumn is creeping in with its cold spells and Homicide Detective Julia Ryland is feeling pretty content with her team of three, but when the FBI behavioral analyst, Alexander Smith, is thrust upon her, the crisp autumn air doesn’t feel as refreshing anymore. A young Icelander is found dead, an arrow piercing his heart and the extensive list of his former lovers suggests that many long nights are ahead. The murdered lothario suddenly becomes the least of their problems as headless corpses start appearing in the woods, positioned in terrifying ways and on their bodies they find messages that don’t seem to have any meaning at all.
It’s all the best of Nordic Noir with a fresh contemporary slant, and I loved it.
– Derek Farrell, Author of The Danny Bird Mysteries
An atmospheric thriller with a heavy dose of humour that will have you laughing and full of suspense at the same time. The surprising plot developments made it impossible to put down!
– Tara Sariban, Bloody Murder Podcast
The Cozy Pages is pleased to host Hildur Sif Thorarensen for a guest post today. Please enjoy her charming post on writing.
I love reading good crime novels, especially those that keep you up way past your bedtime because you just have to read the next chapter. Reading is great, but for me, writing is even more fun. It is an incredible experience to watch your characters come to life and make their own decisions and have their own opinions on things. I may be their creator, but in order for them to stay true to their personalities, I have to let go and give them the chance to do what comes naturally. Often, I will even be surprised by the turn of events and a chapter that I had planned to go a certain way will end up going in a completely different direction. That is the wonder of writing, at times you also become a part of the audience.
I often write at coffee houses, where I truly become one with the story. I’m sure I’ve gotten weird glances when my expression turns sad, surprised or content as I’m writing. I’ll smile throughout a chapter or I’ll even get tears in my eyes from my own writing. I make fun of myself for these inappropriate displays of emotion in public but I enjoy it so much that I don’t mind. If you ever see me writing, come over and say hi, I’ll welcome the distraction.
I’ve taken a year in creative writing at a university and among the things we were taught was how to write about what we know. It is why I chose to set my book in Norway, because I live there. That way I will have soaked in all the quirks and little cultural subtleties that are a part of the nation. Setting oneself in that mental space also deepens your knowledge and understanding of the world around you, a really amazing benefit of being an author. I feel I’ve grown closer to the country that I’m now a part of. Closer than I was before I started writing. I notice things that I wouldn’t have noticed before and I have a great deal of respect for them, because those little ways of going about their day is what makes the people Norwegian.
I always encourage people to write. I think it’s a privilege to live during a time where we have access to libraries upon libraries of information, both online and in a more traditional sense. Our forefathers couldn’t practice like we can because they had to rely on getting skin to write on or carve each letter into stone. We have computers with an immense amount of storing capacity and can therefore use the opportunity to write whatever we feel like writing. Little by little, each writer will improve and in the end result will be even more wonderful authors who’s books we can read.
Hildur Sif Thorarensen is an Icelandic Author living in Norway. Currently a student of Medicine, she’s finished a Master’s Degree in Software Engineering and a Bachelor’s in Computer Science as well as raising two dogs and one boyfriend.