Asa Larsson, Sun Storm

sunstorm.jpgA stunning book, beautifully written, that takes us from Stockholm, where Rebecka Martinsson works long hours in a soulless law office on tax cases, to Kiruna in the arctic north, where a man Rebecka once knew has been murdered ritualistically in a church. His sister, a childhood friend of Rebecka’s, is the prime suspect. The massive church, built to house a revivalist, fundamentalist sect called The Source of All Our Strength, has three shifty pastors who aren’t cooperating with the investigation. Rebecka, who takes on the defense, finds herself allied with a very pregnant police detective, because both of them want to find the truth. The book has wonderful characters, a twisty plot, and a tremendous sense of place. I was particularly pleased that the cultishness of the religion wasn’t overemphasized; the role of the mega-church in the life of the community sheds an interesting light on religion in Swedish society. Though the ending was a bit over the top, it’s all in all a fairly breathtaking performance – presented in a lucid, elegant translation. I’ll certainly be reading more by this author.

2 Responses to Asa Larsson, Sun Storm

  1. maxine says:

    I loved this book, too. Can’t wait for her next to come out in the UK — and I waited what seemed ages for this one (to come out in pb) after reading about it on the US blogs first.
    Have you read other Scandinavian crime? I’ve discovered some excellent authors this year, mainly via crime fic blogs, eg Indridason, Jan Costin Wagner (German, but sets his book in Finland), Edwardsen, Fossum et al.

  2. Barbara says:

    I’ve been reading quite a few – not Wagner, but the others. I’m looking forward to The Draining Lake, which has come out in the UK but not in the US yet. That’s more often the case with translations – so I was surprised to hear we get to read anything first!

    Have you read Jo Nesbo? A Norwegian writer of great talent. Helene Tursten and Kirsten Eckman are good Swedish writers.

    Arnaldur Indridason made a short trip to the US last year and we got him to come to our campus – we have a Scandinavian Studies program which I’d like to turn into the Scandinavian Crime Fiction Studies program :o) There’s certainly be no shortage of books to read.

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