A Book & A Blanket!

It's a miserably cold and rainy Tuesday in November.
What better day to kick off  Marfi's A Book & A Blanket?

The coming weeks I will light lots of fires in the stove and, among other readings,
I will be catching up on a couple of Swedish horror/suspense authors.
Sweden has quite a few good crime/suspense writers, but pure horror
is harder to come by - but I intend to give it my best go! Most of the books
I will be reviewing are available in English if you guys want to look them up.

I started off with the crime/suspense novel 'Kråkflickan' from 2011,
by Eriksson & Axlander-Sundquist. (Awaiting release in English)
 It's a quick read that will completely gross you out all the way through.
The story is full of children and women getting abused, raped, tortured and murdered.
For a feminist misanthropist as myself, this novel perfectly cements my view
of humanity. It's a suspenseful, nasty and depressing read.
The tag-line reads: 'Murder & Psychoanalysis' and the novel certainly makes
use of popular culture's interest in psychopathology. We've seen it before.
What kept me reading though, is that the authors already from the get go
change up the gender dynamics between some of the perpetrators and victims.

Kråkflickan is also the first in a series of three - followed by Hungerelden (2011)
and Pythians Anvisningar (2013) - and the first book leaves off on a cliff-hanger.
I think that if I had known this when I picked it up, it might actually have been more
of an enjoyable read. All three books have received good reviews, but I might need
a while to digest the gruesomeness and hopelessness before I crack open the sequel.

In the meantime I am continuing on my Swedish horror/suspense trek with a trip
to the library tomorrow, where I hope to find John Ajvide Lindqvist's 'Människohamn'
(Harbour) and Johan Theorin's 'Skumtimmen' (Echoes from the Dead)


Thank to Marfi at Incipient Wings for hosting!


16 kommentarer:

  1. ooh!
    this totally sounds like something my daughter would read!
    thank you for this suggestion..I'm going to try and get to know all of these books:)

    1. I don't know when they'll be out in English, but I think pretty soon.

  2. In my younger days I read a lot of horror, authors who would rise to greater fame but by then I was through that phase. Now if I do horror I stick to a DVD so I can fast forward!

    1. I actually agree with you. I read alot of Stephen King and Dean Koontz as a teen, but then the over-writing started getting to me and I stopped. The new generation horror writers are more fast paced though, and some are really good.

  3. Thank you for mentioning the "A Book & A Blanket" contest (is it a contest?), I love to read and will also participate! I never read Swedish Horror, but I might after your nice review. I'm gona ask my friends for them as Christmas gifts... ;)

    1. I think it's called a challenge, and if you haven't read and Swedish horror, I would recommend you start with John Ajvide Lindqvist. I will write about him for Tuesday!

  4. This is one I would have to read very slowly. The cover alone makes shiver with disgust. Then your mention of "children and women getting abused, raped, tortured and murdered" makes me grind my teeth in anger. I don't avoid the books that show our society at its nastiest, but I read them a bit at a time...

    1. I agree and I did not choose this book, it was recommended to me by the librarian - after I had specifically asked for a story WITHOUT abuse and rape... Needless to say, I will choose my own from now on.
      The cover is actually an altered version of an old Swedish painting by famous Carl Larsson.

  5. I never heard of "Book and a Blanket"! Thank you for mentioning it.

    The series you are reading seem's very different than the mystery series we read or were reading here. In the ones we were reading there was always justice, but in the "Navajo" way or Indian way. The unique landscape and their unique religion and meaning of beauty is also woven into the stories and contrasted with the "White Man".

    I wonder how much the weather or climate has to do with what the writers produce? For example some English novels can be so dreary! I couldn't read what you read, sweetie. We are all wired differently. XOXO

    1. Oh, we Swedes love the British "dreary" style - it perfectly matches our own :) And I think that's why the Brits also love Swedish novels. Spiritual and supernatural influences on the other hand, don't usually go over well in our secularized agnostic country.

  6. Like Magaly, I think the cover art alone is very disturbing. It's so interesting to me that as a feminist, misanthropist, and someone who suffers from depression, you don't shy away from this kind of subject matter. From what I can tell, you throw yourself into it. Is it therapeutic for you to confront these kind of themes?

    1. You know, it's a funny thing:
      I usually do shy away from these subjects - at least when it comes to entertainment like books and films. (News is another matter, I want to stay informed). But this book was recommended to me by the librarian on my first visit. I asked specifically for books WITHOUT abuse and rape - because almost every crime/suspense/horror story nowadays seems to cover it.
      And THIS is what she gave me..!

  7. I tend to read anything and everything, nothing beats a good horror for me, but there are some books I simply can't finish.

    After reading Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones about 10 years ago, I decided to delve into an earlier book she'd published - 'Lucky'. It was gruesome and graphic in its detail of her own experience with rape, and sadly, it made me feel physically sick and I haven't read another of her books since.

    'Let the Right One In' is, I think, the only Swedish novel I've attempted to read. The movie was quite good, so I went in search of the book, and quite enjoyed reading it, until the references to paedophilia (which weren't in the movie) began, and I felt uncomfortable about reading any more.

    Having said that. The whole point of Horror is to shock and horrify us.

    I hope you're well and that things are good with yourself and Cinnamon Man x

    1. I agree, it's a balancing act. I like horror for the monsters, both supernatural and the ones inside us, but I have come across nasty books that have put me off otherwise good writers for ever.

      I absolutely LOVED 'Let the Right One' in though. But I read the book first, saw the movie a couple of years later. Gotta say though, the American version was a pretty good adaptation too.

  8. I love reading horror, but I'm a bit childish about wanting a happy ending -- good guys win, monster is dead, YAY! I'm afraid the pessimistic stuff doesn't interest me -- there's way too much of that in real life already...

    1. I agree with you to a certain extent - I would not have chosen something this horrific on my own. I don't mind dark and depressing if there's a great big fight/solution at the end, and I like me a little hint of something supernatural too :)


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