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Silence of the Graveby Arnaldur Indridason
Synopses & Reviews
Downtrodden Detective Erlendur and his team must once again investigate Reykjavik's hidden past to unravel a case of human nastiness.
Construction work in an expanding Reykjavik uncovers a shallow grave. Years before, this part of the city was all open hills, and Erlendur and his team hope this is a typical Icelandic missing person scenario; perhaps someone once lost in the snow, who has lain peacefully buried for decades. But things are never that simple. While Erlendur struggles to hold together the crumbling fragments of his own family, his case unearths many other tales of family pain.
The hills have more than one tragic story to tell: tales of failed relationships and heartbreak; of anger, domestic violence and fear; of family loyalty and family shame. Few people are still alive who can tell the story, but even secrets taken to the grave cannot remain hidden forever.
Alive with tension and atmosphere, and disturbingly real, this is an outstanding continuation of the Reykjavik Murder Mysteries.
"In Indridason's excellent second mystery (after 2005's Jar City), a skeleton, buried for more than 50 years, is uncovered at a building site on the outskirts of Reykjavk. Who is it? How did he or she die? And was it murder? The police wonder, chief among them the tortured, introspective Inspector Erlendur, introduced in Jar City. While an archeologist excavates the burial site, several other narratives unfold: a horrifying story of domestic abuse set during WWII, a search for missing persons that unearths almost-forgotten family secrets involving some of the city's most prominent citizens, and Erlendur's own painful family story (his estranged, drug-addicted daughter is in a coma, after miscarrying her child). All these strands are compelling, but it's the story of the physical and psychological battering of a young mother of three by her husband that resonates most. And the denouement of this astonishingly vivid and subtle novel is unexpected and immensely satisfying. Indridason has won the CWA Golden Dagger Award. Author tour. (Oct.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"The author raises the same ghosts in Silence of the Grave, applying his austere style to a crime of such emotional breadth and sociological complexity that it acquires the sweep and consequence of epic storytelling." New York Times
"Like the long, cold Scandinavian winters, this novel features much darkness, yet as in the Icelandic sagas the author has studied, there is some hope amidst much pain and suffering." Library Journal
"[A] resonant psychological crime novel rich in unflinching observations about family relationships." Kirkus Reviews
"With a narrative that jumps between the 1940s and the present....Indridason has definitely vaulted onto the A-list of Scandinavian crime authors." Booklist
Downtrodden detective Erlendur and his team must once again look into Reykjavik's hidden past to unravel a case of human nastiness. Alive with tension and atmosphere, and disturbingly real, this is an outstanding continuation of the Reykjavik Murder Mysteries.
“Now Iceland has its own Mankell.”
---Holger Kreitling, Die Welt (Germany)
Last year Jar City introduced international crime-writing sensation Arnaldur Indridason to rave reviews and a rousing welcome from American thriller fans. And now, Silence of the Grave, the next in this stunning series has won the coveted Golden Dagger Award. Presented by the British Crime Writers' Association, previous winners of this award include John Le Carre, Minette Walters, Henning Mankell, and James Lee Burke.
In Silence of the Grave, a corpse is found on a hill outside the city of Reykjavík, and Detective Inspector Erlendur Sveinsson and his team think the body may have been buried for some years.
While Erlendur struggles to hold together the crumbling fragments of his own family, slowly but surely he finds out the truth about another unhappy family. Few people are still alive who can tell the tale, but even secrets taken to the grave cannot remain hidden forever.
Destined to be a classic in the world of crime fiction, Silence of the Grave is one of the most accomplished thrillers in recent years.
Winner of the CWA Gold Dagger Award
Inspector Erlendur returns in this gripping Icelandic thriller When a skeleton is discovered half-buried in a construction site outside of Reykjavík, Inspector Erlendur finds himself knee-deep in both a crime scene and an archeological dig. Bone by bone, the body is unearthed, and the brutalizing history of a family who lived near the building site comes to light along with it. Was the skeleton a man or a woman, a victim or a killer, and is this a simple case of murder or a long-concealed act of justice? As Erlendur tries to crack this cold case, he must also save his drug-addicted daughter from self destruction and somehow glue his hopelessly fractured family back together.
Like the chilly Nordic mysteries of Henning Mankell and Karen Fossum, Arnaldur Indridason delivers a stark police procedural full of humanity and pathos, a classic noir from a very cold place.
About the Author
Arnaldur Indridason won the Glass Key Award for Best Nordic Crime Novel for both Jar City and Silence of the Grave. He lives in Reykjavík.
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