The Ice Star: unlikely Arctic adventures

Neither Nordic noir nor Scandi crime, The Ice Star is an action-adventure pursuit story which barrels back and forth across Greenland’s Arctic landscape. This is not an atmospheric, melancholic exploration of the long night of the Scandinavian soul, but rather a runaway sledge ride from one shoot-out to the next. The strong female protagonist is,…

Rellik: criminally brilliant

This is the crime drama of the year for me, and the BBC deserve considerable kudos for bringing a concept this challenging to our screens. It proves that intelligent and gripping thrillers aren’t the sole preserve of ScandiLand, and Rellik is every bit as good as the best Nordic noir. The six-part drama isn’t just…

The Monster Underneath: dream weaving

In the Hannibal Lecter series, investigator Will Graham exerts his psychoanalytic expertise and his emotional empathy to ‘get inside’ the heads of murderers and monsters. In an entirely matter of fact way, author Matthew Franks takes that premise one step further and gives his protagonist, Max Crawford, the ability to read people’s thoughts in the…

More Halloween Reads

Weird visitations from beyond the grave: werewolf detectives and golden age investigators; haunted houses and the spirits of the suburbs – enter the weirder world of crime fiction, where police procedurals and murder-mysteries overlap with uncanny happenings… The Mysterious Mr Quin by Agatha Christie A collection of a dozen intertwined short stories from the grand…

Criminal Halloween Reading

Werewolves howl. Phantoms prowl. Halloween’s upon us now! So let’s settle down with something on the spooky side of crime fiction. Here’s the first of this week’s special selection of chilling thrillers, exploring the mysterious hinterland between hardboiled noir and the beasts which prowl in the far beyond… Falling Angel by William Hjortsberg Let’s kick…

The Man Who Died: a comedy of killing

We’re all going to die. But Finnish businessman Jakko discovers more about his own death than most people would want to. He’s going to die quite soon, and he’s going to die quite unpleasantly. And he’s going to die because someone close to him has killed him. But who, and why? And what should he…