Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Dark Pines (Tuva Moodyson Mystery, #1)” as Want to Read:
Dark Pines (Tuva Moodyson Mystery, #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Dark Pines

(Tuva Moodyson Mystery #1)

3.74  ·  Rating details ·  3,020 ratings  ·  527 reviews
An isolated Swedish town. A deaf reporter terrified of nature. A dense spruce forest overdue for harvest. A pair of eyeless hunters found murdered in the woods.

It’s week one of the Swedish elk hunt and the sound of gunfire is everywhere. When Tuva Moodyson investigates the story that could make her career she stumbles on a web of secrets that knit Gavrik town together. Are
Paperback, Trade, 328 pages
Published January 4th 2018 by OneWorld Publications Point Blank
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Dark Pines, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
This question contains spoilers... (view spoiler)
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.74  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,020 ratings  ·  527 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Dark Pines (Tuva Moodyson Mystery, #1)
Nov 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This is a taut dark, atmospheric crime noir, set in a remote town, Gavrik, in Sweden. Tuva Moodyson is a local reporter, deaf since she was a child, who moved here reluctantly after working in London. She has settled in rural 'shitsville' only because her mother is terminally ill, expected only to live for a year. Two people make life bearable for Tuva, her half-Nigerian editor, Lena, whom she admires and learns a lot from, and Tammy, her best friend and crucial support. Surrounded by forests, G ...more
Richard (on hiatus)
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers-uk
From the blurb one would assume that Dark Pines is a typical Scandinavian thriller - a chilly tale of murder set in a small town, deep in the forests of rural Sweden.
The novel however is written by Brit Will Dean.
Rather than it just being a copycat pastiche of the many impressive Scandi crime novels out there, it turns out that Dean himself has left the U.K. and now lives in Sweden, so has some real experience to draw upon.
The novel features Tuva Moodyson, a journalist, previously working for
This is a very chilling, atmospheric read. Swedish noir in a deep dark forest with gun toting hunters and a host of creepy characters living in tiny Mossen village in Utgard forest. A hoarder who lives in a caravan because his house is packed with his hoardings, an unsettling taxi driver, a ghost writer who likes to cook unusual parts of animals, two sisters who carve monstrous Troll dolls and the married couple who live secret lives behind the facade of their happy marriage. Nearby in the fores ...more
Liz Barnsley
Jul 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Dark Pines is one of those books where I look up from the pages after finishing it, slightly dazed, going Yep THAT is what I am looking for.

Beautiful beautiful writing, totally immersive from the very first page with a main protagonist that you just fall in love with and an atmospheric, haunting sense of things that will linger for a long time. Will Dean’s intuitive prose just sends you to Gavrik, a small town, a tight knit community, people just looking for a quiet life, but there is a dangerou
Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)
"Dark Pines" written by Will Dean is the first in the deaf journalist, Tuva Moodyson series set in Sweden and was featured on the Sunday morning tv show 'The Zoe Ball Book Club'.
After reading some rave reviews for this book and enjoying a lot of social media time, I was really looking forward to reading it and was hoping and expecting a unique and tense, crime thriller.
However, I found the main protagonist Tuva to be boring and the atmospheric setting to be over detailed which therefore came ac
Sep 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was drawn into the story from the first page on. It started with speed and tension which were kept up for most of the time. Although I guessed who the culprit was early on (unlike me), I still wanted to read on and find out how the story developed. Quite a debut!
Ova - Excuse My Reading
Apr 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audio-book, crime, mystery
I liked this, how could you not like something so atmospheric and that takes you to the wilderness of Sweden forests?

Tuva is a deaf journalist, able to hear with a hearing aid, she likes turning it off and disconnecting herself from the world. She lives in northern Sweden which is a tight community- not seemingly welcoming change, or open minds. Detached from her dying mother, she is a lone soul with a will to make the career move to move away from the area.

Elk hunt is a big thing in this town c
Rachel Hall
Jan 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Dark Pines is another overhyped debut of 2018 which proved disappointing lacking in the wow factor for me with its unconvincing attempt at capturing the magic of the Nordic Noir. After an inauspicious start which takes too long for the story to take hold, Will Dean’s insipid deaf protagonist, twenty-six-year-old Tuva Moodyson fails to inspire and is steadfastly behind the curve in journalistic instinct failing to gain any real traction for the majority of the novel. Added to that are pages of re ...more
Well, apparently I am in the minority here. I never found my way into the story. I also never connected to Tuva. To be honest, I did not like her. I found her actions and investigations quite stupid.

Yes, there was a dark and disturbing atmosphere. The setting is creepy but the story itself did not work for me. I got bored and almost stopped reading. But I tent to finish books I got from NetGalley, just to give it a proper chance. Also there are a lot of raving reviews so I thought I was just mis
Dec 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: physical-arcs
Do you need a new book to add to your TBR, one that has not only a chilly atmosphere but also a chilling plot? I’m assuming you’re nodding your head thinking, yes that’s exactly what I’m looking for, because that’s why you’re here, right?! There is nothing better than a reading a book that matches the current season, a beach read in the summer, a horror novel in the fall or a book like Dark Pines in the winter. It had a fantastic combination of a strong and interesting lead character, a creepy s ...more
Mark Porton
Jun 09, 2021 rated it really liked it
Dark Pines by Will Dean is a pretty good thriller and whodunnit. You know one of those stories where you’re thinking about who the culprit is while you’re doing other things. The only other Will Dean book I’ve read is The Last Thing to Burn, which was good too – I gave that one 4 stars.

This story is based in Sweden in a small rural town, out in the deep, dark woods – like, really deep and really dark. It’s the type of place where the best coffee is at McDonalds, and everyone knows everyone else.
Carolyn Walsh
Jan 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This was a chilling, atmospheric story set in a village and dense forests of rural Sweden. It is gripping and creepy, and there is a sinister feeling connected with its small-town inhabitants. A menacing mood is prevalent and the tension never lets up.

I love a story that transports me to an unfamiliar place. The author brilliantly evokes the land, painting vivid word pictures of its dark vast forests of spruce, pine and birch, its damp bogs and marshes, the mud underfoot, the rain, sleet, and
Crime by the Book
Nov 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Read my full review here:

This is a strong debut thriller with a fantastic atmosphere and a compelling main character! Set in rural Sweden, DARK PINES has a strong sense of place that will appeal to fans of Nordic Noir. I loved Dean's vivid descriptions of the landscape. This book really took off for me around page 100 or so - the beginning was a bit slow/choppy for me, but I wound up really enjoying it!
Gumble's Yard - Golden Reviewer
Part of the 2018 Guardian Not The Booker shortlist for which I am delighted to have been picked as a judge.

This book, together with another Guardian Not The Booker choice - Dervla McTiernan’s The Ruin - was one of Val McDermid’s 2018 New Blood picks at the annual Harrogate Crime Writing Festival: a previous pick being Belinda Bauer whose Snap was picked by the Booker judges (including McDermid – a tireless champion of crime fiction and of new crime writer
Lucy Banks
Jan 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.

Scandi-thriller with some good characters.

I'm not adverse to the occasional bleak Scandinavian murder novel, though in all honesty, I do feel they are becoming a little formulaic. However, this one had enough 'new' elements to keep me reading on.

Tuva is a deaf young woman, who has returned to a remote part of Sweden to be nearer to her dying mother. Working for the local paper, she's suddenly pulled into a full-blown
Laura Anne
EXCRUCIATINGLY boring - Could Not Finish. I refuse to give it any stars. If anyone wants my reasons - I can elaborate.
A vast, dark, Swedish forest, a deaf print-journalist and the suspected return of a serial killer from the past -- these are the main ingredients for this fabulous concoction of Scandi Noir from British ex-pat author Will Dean. It's the first in a series that I'm excited to have discovered for myself.

Tuva Moodyson left a good life in London to return to Sweden when her mother was diagnosed with a terminal illness. She's landed in Gavrik, which she disparagingly refers to as Toytown, working for
Tracy Fenton
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I met the author Will Dean in July at Harrogate and was told by everyone to read his book so I immediately downloaded it in July and promptly forgot about it until mid December when I was politely reminded by Liz Barnsley to “read his bloody book now woman, you’ve had it for 6 months”.

Dark Pines is more than just a crime thriller, it’s a story full of quirky characters with depth set in an atmospheric and creepy surrounding.

With a wonderful main character, Tuva Moodyson, a deaf, bi-sexual report
Jan 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All reviews can be found on

OMFG this is such an amaaaazing book, I am not sure my review will do it justice! But I will give it a go!

The reader finds themselves in Sweden facing loss; grief; differences; secrets/lies; discrimination; small-town mentalities; judgement; a search for the truth – all is not what it seems in the isolated Swedish town, that’s for sure!!

Can I just say that the description throughout this debut novel was EXQUISITE!! I could just about smell th
Victor *True Unagi Master*
This is a difficult review to leave because I was looking forward to reading this for a long time and when I started, I found things that bothered me from, what seemed like, the get-go. By the 22nd page I think I had read at least three times that electronics that were almost dead and had to be recharged.

Yes this bothered me.

If you're a regular bloke with a regular job, I get it. If you're a reporter, your phone, Ipad and camera are so crucial to doing your job that they should always be charg
Lucy Langford
Jul 09, 2018 rated it liked it

Dark, Gritty and Atmospheric!

The heroine of this book, Tuva Moodyson, a young deaf woman, is the local reporter in a very small Swedish town called Gavrik. She usually reports on local news, run-of-the-mill stories derived from rumour and council minutes. However, when a dead body appears, with the eyes missing, in Utgard forest, not far from Gavrik, Tuva has the chance to write a story that will change and further her career. The frightening thing about this murder is that it resembles t
Joanne Robertson
Jan 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I have only recently become a fan of “nordic noir” as I was never too sure whether it was going to be quite my cup of tea! But after I had read my first one, and LOVED IT, then I got braver about the variety of books I tried and my love affair with the genre has now gone from strength to strength. Still, I know some readers worry they won’t gel with a translation to English or lots of difficult to pronounce names or places. So I think that if you want to try Nordic noir then Dark Pines would be ...more
Oct 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley-arcs
Nordic noir at it's finest! What a compelling story this was. This is a slow burning novel but never once did I lose interest. Our main character Tuva is a deaf, bi-sexual reporter whom I've become seriously attached to. She is such a wonderful character that you just can't help but root for her. The scenery depictions really sets the atmosphere of this novel. I almost felt like I was in Sweden while reading it.

The mystery centers around hunters being murdered in the forest, and if that isn't b
Mar 09, 2019 rated it liked it
Hum - what can I say. I'm afraid I found this pretty predictable really. Forest in Sweden with hunters and bodies in - yes I think I have some idea what is going to happen. Maybe I've read too many books (!!!). While I liked Tuva as a character I was less than convinced by her. She really did seem like a female written by a guy - I never really felt she was female. The pace wasn't bad and the ending was ok but not enough to make me want to read any more by the author I'm afraid. I realise others ...more
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Slow start, adequate prose, nice characters and descriptive passages. Improves as the author gains confidence.

This book is more about characters and pacing than plot. There are some procedural elements, but I enjoyed the laid-back style in the first half book.

Then, Chapter 38 is wonderful! Wow, a breakthrough for Dean. Great prose and observation. Nice pacing. This improvement lasts a chapter or two, then settles back to the previous, merely adequate style.

The climax and solution to the murder
Literature & Lofi - Benjamin Blackmore
Welcome to Gavrik, a small, rural Swedish town that is the epitome of one word... isolation.

Hunting is a way of life here. Guns are everywhere. Eccentricity is considered normal here. And boy, are there a ton of secrets.

We follow the local newspaper journalist, Tuva Moodyson. She's hungry for a big break to prove herself, independent, brave, and curious by nature. She carries a few personal burdens and hang-ups that really add to her complexity and influence her actions/decision making. I rea
Ruthy lavin
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
I’m a big fan of Scandi Noir and this book did not disappoint.
Great descriptive writing set a wonderful mental picture of this small, rural Swedish town, surrounded by dense forest.
Pair it with a very likeable and unique main character, totally deaf journalist Tuva, and you have a winning combination.
A great story, enthralling from beginning to end, I’ve immediately downloaded the second instalment and I am excited to read more of Will Dean’s work.
An easy 4 star rating.
Dec 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Something I‘ve come to love in books is when a murder investigation takes place through the eyes of a journalist because the main protagonist, in this case, Tuva, isn’t bound by police protocol but instead has the freedom of a journalist and that leaves the plot wide open.

Tuva is a wonderful character, who I liked instantly; she’s tasked with reporting on the latest murders to hit the small town of Gavrik, not only does this mean venturing into the woods, which, understandably, she finds terrify
Debut mystery novel by a non-writer. The story was okay. I didn't find it particularly dark. It did have some interesting characters.

I had a huge issue with the author's writing style and his choice of words. His writing seemed inconsistent throughout. At times, I had the feeling he was rushing through scenes instead of taking the time to flesh them out better. He also clearly does a poor job writing female characters, even if LGBTQ. The female protagonist's narrative just reads as though it is
Jan 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(Actually, 4.5 stars and I'll explain why later...)

Welcome to Sweden’s weirdest village!
Meet the terrible troll-carving sisters, who enhance their ugly dolls with real human body hair.
And the secretive writer with a taste for extreme cuisine.
Then there’s Benny, Bjorn and Frida – no Agnetha, though, unfortunately.
Somebody’s been shooting people and cutting out their eyes, and Tuva, a journalist on the local paper, is on the case.
It’s rare that I care much about the ‘detective’ in my thrill
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Røykteppe (Alexander Blix & Emma Ramm, #2)
  • De cursus
  • De Kliniek
  • Noorderlicht
  • Orakel
  • Helsinki
  • Geiger
  • Alleen
  • Hej Denemarken
  • Nooit meer alleen
  • Fruset guld (Rönning & Stilton, #6)
  • Død manns tango (Gudmundsson and Skeisvoll #3)
  • Les refuges
  • Het geheime kistje van Elle
  • The Radio Operator
  • Lentegroen
  • Six Stories (Six Stories, #1)
  • Mijn Waarheid
See similar books…
Will Dean grew up in the East Midlands, living in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. He was a bookish, daydreaming kid who found comfort in stories and nature (and he still does). After studying Law at the LSE, and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden. He built a wooden house in a boggy clearing at the centre of a vast elk forest, and it's from this base that he compulsiv ...more

Other books in the series

Tuva Moodyson Mystery (3 books)
  • Red Snow (Tuva Moodyson Mystery, #2)
  • Black River (Tuva Moodyson Mystery, #3)

News & Interviews

Need another excuse to treat yourself to a new book this week? We've got you covered with the buzziest new releases of the day. To create our...
7 likes · 0 comments