There are [Swedish] writers who set their novels in the more rural and sparsely populated settings, lending a decidedly chill atmosphere to the stories (the Swedish have an almost mystical attitude towards wooded areas and trees).
The above I wrote in my review of and in response to Camille Ceder's Frozen Moment, the first example of a Swedish book I've read that alluded to a Swede's almost mystical attitude toward the woods. Blackwater is another prime exemplar of this type of book, a...more
I really enjoyed this crime novel. It's different, firstly as it's not written from the usual perspective of the detective solving the murder case. Kerstin Ekman wrote Blackwater from the point of view of three main characters and I really felt like I could relate to the thoughts, feelings and perspectives of three distinct individuals throughout.
It was beautifully written but in a very 'real' way. For me, what makes it st...more
- Have you read Händelser Vid Vatten? Kerstin Ekman.
- Which one's that?
- You know, the controversial one. The teenage boy gets stuck down a well...
- Oh right, that one! Yes, I've read it. He escapes with a salamander in a bucket...
- Isn't it an eel?
- Well maybe an eel then. I don't know. And he somehow ends up in a relationship with this considerably older woman. He uses low-fat margarine to...
- Look, the low-fat margarine doesn't have anything much to do with the story.
- I know, I know. But som...more
Oh, and the eel in the bucket was a particularly nice touch.
Le sinossi sono come i bugiardini delle medicine, non andrebbero mai lette. Questa, come potete vedere, promette momenti mozzafiato, adrenalina, palpitazioni. In realtà quello che mi sono trovata tra le mani è un libro paludoso, triste e vischioso. Avrebbe anche un bell'intreccio una buona dose di personaggi con i loro bravi segreti, una quantità di fili e strade sbarrate sufficienti a renderlo una vicenda abbastanza vero...more
I'm not sure what to make of this book so far. It's got plenty of intriguing stuff going on but it's not unputdownable. It starts in what I presume is the present day, at least it's eighteen years after the story that starts to be told a few pages in. In those first few pages we see at least three of the characters from the main story that comes after them.
One of the problems I have with translated stories is that I wonder how much of the writing is what would have been in the original version....more
Blackwater has no such character; really there is no real "investigator" character at all. There is a crime, but it is presented in such a way that we don't really get to know the victims, or care all that much about them. Blackwater is not about who killed them.
Instead, what this bo...more
As far as mystery & crime thrillers go, this was quite good - the mystery surrounding the double murder increases and the last 120 pages were quite surprising at some points - but the rest was not so compelling. Even thou...more
But seriously, Blackwater is an excellent, excellent book. Joan Tate's translation is graceful and clean, and just a bit spooky. The book itself is consistently unnerving, and I have to say that I never saw the resolution to the mystery. But calling Blackwater a mystery is really an oversimplification, and I say that as someone with a lot of...more
She began her career with a string of successful detective novels (among others De tre små mästarna ("The Three Little Masters") and Dödsklockan ("The Death Clock")) but later went on to persue psychological and social themes. Among her later works are Mörker och blåbärsris ("Darkness and Blueberries"), set in northern Sweden, and Händelser vid vatten (...more