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The Midnight Sun: A Novel (Svartåsen #2)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  401 Ratings  ·  72 Reviews

From the acclaimed author of Wolf Winter comes a new historical crime novel with all the intrigue and atmosphere of Burial Rites and the suspense of The Tenderness of Wolves. Taking place a hundred years after the shocking events of Wolf Winter in the same haunting territory, In the Month of the Midnight Sun is set in high summer, under the searing light of a sun that neve

Kindle Edition, 336 pages
Published March 7th 2017 by HarperAvenue (first published February 11th 2016)
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Amalia Gavea
''June is a good month to purge. It's a time to flush things out, to eliminate, to seek liberation. It's a month of light. The month of the midnight sun.''

Cecilia Ekbäck's Wolf Winter is one of the greatest literary loves of my life. A novel that transported me in a distant, mystical setting, in a way that few novels have managed to do. Therefore, there was much anticipation and excitement when I opened the front cover of In the Month of the Midnight Sun. As I was reading on and on, I realised
Stockholm, 1856 and geologist Magnus Stille has been summoned by his father in law, the state minister for justice. He asks Magnus to travel to Blackåsen Mountain in order to carry out a mineralogical survey, but in actuality to investigate the murder of three settlers by a native Lapp. The Lapp was found sitting with the bodies of the priest, the constable and a visitor and the government needs to know if this is the start of a Lapp uprising or if the men were murdered for another reason. Along ...more
Sonja Arlow
3 stars

Set 100 years after the events of Wolf Winter the story opens with the murder of 3 town settlers, the priest, the constable and one other person. The guilty party, a Lapp unfamiliar to the locals stays with the bodies for 3 days and no clear motive is established. This is a small isolated community and this event shakes up the living (and the dead).

Magnus, the adopted son of some or other important Minister, is tasked to travel to Blackasen to get to the bottom of these killings in an at
Mis Lecturas
Un 3,5 en realidad. Su trama es dolorosamente lenta.
Mi opinión completa:
A slow moving mystery that is all about the place- the place being Lapland in Sweden, 1856.
A very atmospheric novel-we totally are surrounded by the landscape of the area, the people of the area and the mountain- Blackasen Mountain, a looming presence, which plays a key role in this novel.
The story is told from 3 POV's- Magnus, who has been sent there to investigate a triple murder; Lovisa, his sister in law, who has been banished by her father; Ester (also know as Biije). a Lapp Woman
Lauren K
Jul 18, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the Month of the Midnight Sun is the second historical Nordic Noir thriller by Swedish author Cecilia Ekback. Her debut novel, Wolf Winter was one of my favourite reads of 2015, so when I had the opportunity to read her new release (set 150 years later in the same setting) I was very excited! She’s a brilliant writer and creates a character-driven and intricate plotted murder mystery that keeps you guessing until the very end.

It’s 1855 in the Swedish Lapland’s Mountains and three men have bee
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Dual review with Swedish first and then English!


Midnattssolens timme innehåller alla de element som jag verkligen gillar i en bok. Jag är oerhört förtjust i att läsa historiska spänningsromaner och den samiska kulturen har i flera år fascinerat mig. Jag har inte läst Cecilia Ekbäcks tidigare roman I varjavinterns land, en den ligger högt på listan på böcker jag vill läsa.

Magnus Stille är svärson till justitieministern i Sverige. Magnus skickas upp till Svartåsen i Lappland för at
Aug 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the settlement on Blackåsen Mountain, one of the natives has slaughtered three of the settlers. The reason behind this act is unknown, and he hasn’t spoken since being found at the scene, neither protesting his innocence nor offering any explanation.

In Stockholm, the Minister asks his adopted son, Magnus, a geologist, to investigate the crime and to interview the perpetrator, as well as to survey Blackåsen Mountain, rich in iron deposits. As he leaves, he is given a third task – to take his s
May 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-top-five
This is a fantastic book. I love the way Ekback weaves supernatural themes throughout her books. But she never allows her characters to use this to deny their own agency - the bad things that happen throughout the story are done by humans and not monsters, and they spring from very human foibles, not some otherworldly force.

In Wolf Winter, the winter season that the characters lived through was almost like a character in its own right, along with Blackasen. However I felt as if Blackasen took o
A strongly delivered historical mystery set in Sweden in the latter half of the 1800's. It's a multi layered novel told from three separate points of view. I'm not normally a fan of this type of delivery but it does work in this novel. There is Magnus Stille a mineralogist of unknown origin, Lovisa, his errant sister in law and Ester an old and frail Lapp woman. These three vastly different characters come together on the mountain of Blackasen, a mountain steeped in mystery and rich in mineral d ...more
Feb 13, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, dnf
I read the magnificent Wolf Winter and was excited to know there was a sequel, even if set a century later with different characters, but in the same place.
Both books stand on their own, so I definitely encourage you to read Wolf Winter.

The problem here is that there is no tension or stakes for the characters. There's no sense of urgency for anything.
It's a glaring contrast to Wolf Winter where there was that creep, cold and uncertain feeling around everything happening. The characters talked to
Jul 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautifully written, complex tapestry of lives following a series of murders in Blackåsen, Swedish Lapland in 1856. Eckbäck makes Blackåsen a character in its own right. A brooding, tense and meticulously researched novel, this is historical fiction (meets crime) at its best.
Lynn S.
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the characters and the atmosphere and the ending was well done.
Keith Currie
May 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The inevitability of tragedy
It is 1855 and in Lapland in the far north of Sweden three men lie dead killed, it seems, by an unknown Lapp. Fearing that this is a manifestation of Lapp unrest, the minister of Justice sends his son-in-law Magnus to close down the problem. Magnus is a scarred orphan of unknown origin, raised by the minister to a life of service to the state. At the last moment he sends Lovisa, his own errant daughter too, a young woman who fails to meet her father’s expectations of
Ekback knows how to put a story together. Religion in 19th Century Sweden, subjugation of Lapps, Lapps' beliefs, treatment of women, greed, rape and murder are all wrapped into this story. Narrated by Magnus a geologist, Lovisa his sister-in-law, Esther a Lapp and the spirit of Nila, Esther's dead husband. All of the narrators are, in their own way, lost.
They are in the remote area of Blacksen Mountain where there had been a savage murder, the town has no children and there is simmering tensions
Sep 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wobble-challenge
Review originally posted at Dual Reads
Copy received from publisher for an honest review

Last year Wolf Winter was a book I hardly knew how to categorise. It wasn't a book I necessarily enjoyed but it stayed with me long after I was finished reading. So when I saw In the Month of the Midnight Sun I knew I had to read it.

In many ways this is the one I prefer of the two. In the Month of the Midnight Sun keeps the overawing presence of the mountain but moves the timeline forwards around 130 years. So
In the Month of the Midnight Sun is a historical crime novel set in a fictional Swedish village in 1856. Three men are found slaughtered, their murderer - a Lapp, one of the nomadic Sami people - sitting quietly with them. He does not speak to explain, nor does he resist when he arrested and imprisoned. Magnus Stille is sent with his wayward sister-in-law, Lovisa, to investigate under the guise of mapping the mountain, Blackåsen, the village lies in the shadow. Biija, a Lapp who has left her tri ...more
Jo Bennie
The year is 1856. Magnus Stille is the adopted son and son in law of Karl Rosenblad, Chief Minister of Justice in Stockholm. Magnus is a geologist at a time when there are tensions between Swedes migrating north into Lappland and the indigenous Lapps. Far to the north of Stockholm in the tiny village of Blackasen three men lie dead, killed by an elderly Lapp who will not speak and tell what happened. Karl sends Magnus north on the pretext of mapping the mountain above Blackasen. Officially he is ...more
Aug 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery

Ekback writes beautifully, this is similar to Wolf Winter in that it is set in the same area - Blackasen Mountain, and follows a similar storyline - people are mysteriously murdered in the surrounding area. Ekback is fantastic at building up intricate and complex human relationships, conveying how the characters are affected by the landscape and near constant light. The effect that this has on personal relationships - being secluded in small incestuous local communities, and the resulting tensio
Marcus Hobson
Jun 26, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed Cecilia Ekbäck's first novel, Woof Winter, and this is an excellent sequel. Set this time in the 1850s, the same landscape dominates this book too, the mysterious mountain Blackåsen which looms above the village and has a strange pull on people and spirits. But now we are in mid-summer when the sun almost never sets and sleep is impossible.

I liked the range of characters in this book, outsiders coming to the little village and finding both unexpected friendships and indifferent distrus
Nov 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Historical thriller, revisiting the same place in northern Sweden as in "Wolf winter" but set in the mid 19th century (and with little to explain what might have happened in between, e.g. the disappearance of the church). Told from four points of view. This one takes place at the height of summer, really good at conveying the oppressive atmosphere of the small community and its apparently cursed mountain, with the added lack of darkness at night. Particularly glad that Magnus's origins are uncov ...more
May 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Durante toda la novela sentimos el halo misterioso del lugar, la luz de medianoche que no se apaga más que una hora al día, y el cansancio y la violencia reinan. Pero no todo seguirá igual con el paso de las páginas, mientras que al principio nos encontramos con más información acerca de la cultura o de la geografía del lugar haciendo del libro algo más histórico, hacia la mitad de la novela notamos la esencia fantástica que se convierte en las últimas páginas en un thriller muy rápido. Los capí ...more
Jul 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tre personer, deras tankar som vävs ihop till denna historia. Ibland tar det lite tid innan man förstår vem det är som är den berättande just då. Lite förvirrande ibland men också väldigt uttänkt då allt sammanflätas. Efter ett tag upptäcker man att det finns en berättande röst till. Slutet gör att man får tänka till lite. Vad är det egentligen som händer, är det slut där?
Jag vill gärna veta vad som hände sen. Strax efteråt, efter ett år, efter tio år.
Pamela  Tickner
Apr 09, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this story set in Sweden in 1856. Having recently watched a murder/mystery series on SBS set around the same area I was intrigued to learn more about Lapps (Sami). The chapters alternate between the three main characters which allows a seamless way to explore what is happening from the viewpoint of the traditional owners of the land, the settlers, the modern man and the oppressed young woman. Well researched and beautifully written the story blends the number of themes seamlessly.
Vikki Patis
May 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I *loved* Wolf Winter, Ekbäck's first novel, and was excited to get on to her next one. In The Month of The Midnight Sun didn't quire capture me as much as Wolf Winter, but it was still an excellent read.

Perhaps I would have been better off reading the book, rather than listening to the audiobook, which wasn't quite as absorbing as I'd hoped - though the narrator was decent enough.

All in all, another success for Ekbäck. She's another author I'll always keep a close eye on.
I LOVE Cecilia Ekback. I was originally drawn to her because of the similarities of our names. Since my maiden name is Backer (pronounced Baker), I have more than one likeness.

Her first book is called Wolf Winter and takes place at the base of Blackåsen Mountain in the year 1717. It was thrilling AND chilling.

Her second book also takes place near Blackåsen Village, but 150 years later. A Lapp sits surrounded by three dead bodies – the vicar, a constable and one other. Has he killed them or has s
Annette Juhlin
Feb 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Det är inte bara kriminalgåtan som driver mig att hela tiden läsa vidare, jag riktigt njuter av att försvinna in i det för mig exotiska sättet att leva och i det exotiska landskapet. Lappland, med en sol som lyser dygnet runt, tät skog och ett berg med avgörande betydelse för människors liv. Och så människorna som lever där, de som är inflyttade och de vars släkt levt i området sedan urminnes tider.

Hit kommer Magnus Stille, utbildad mineralog från Stockholm och starkt präglad av tidens nya ström
Jul 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In many ways I found this book incredibly frustrating: at times the story was decidely slow and diluted, and the changing points of view took quite a bit of getting used to. The characters are hard to get to know, although as a story about maps and characters who are all lost in some way I guess this makes sense. Yet despite this I found the writing was incredibly interesting at times as well - for example, when Magnus demands Lovisa tell him something about the town he hadn't noticed, her comme ...more
Mi Camino Blanco
Este es uno de esos libros en los que la geografía, la cultura y la atmósfera en la que se desarrolla la historia tienen tanta importancia que casi son un personaje más.

La acción es narrada desde tres diferentes puntos de vista, pero el misterio principal de la trama es menos importante que la evolución de esos tres personajes a lo largo de la historia. Sin duda, el más complejo e interesante es Lovisa, una niña mimada y confundida que va descubriendo poco a poco su camino. Magnus y la mujer lo
In a rural area where there are tensions between settlers and the indigenous Sami, three men are found murdered. Magnus, a geologist and son-in-law to the Justice Minister, is sent north to investigate. Accompanying him is his wife's sister Lovisa, sent away in disgrace for a misdemeanor in a long line of mistaken behaviour. The story kind of plodded along but not in a bad way as we learnt a little more about what happened in Blackasen and it slowly built up to a dramatic ending. I had high hope ...more
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Around the Year i...: In the Month of the Midnight Sun, by Cecilia Ekback 1 8 Dec 04, 2017 08:31AM  
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Cecilia was born in the north of Sweden; her parents come from Lapland. During her teens, she worked as a journalist and after university specialised in marketing. Over twenty years her work took her to Russia, Germany, France, Portugal, the Middle East and the UK.

In 2010, she finished a Masters in Creative Writing at Royal Holloway. She now lives in Calgary with her husband and twin daughters, 'r
More about Cecilia Ekbäck

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Svartåsen (2 books)
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