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Moordkuil by Arnaldur Indridason
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1,710864,155 (3.89)163
Member:divinenanny
Title:Moordkuil
Authors:Arnaldur Indridason (Author)
Other authors:Paula Vermeyden (Translator)
Info:Signature (2008), Utrecht, Paperback, 251p.
Collections:Your library, Buy and Get 2010, Unread, Readable, Henk's ongelezen
Rating:
Tags:detective, fiction

Work details

Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indriðason (2001)

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» See also 163 mentions

English (66)  Spanish (6)  Dutch (5)  Swedish (3)  German (2)  Danish (2)  Norwegian (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (86)
Showing 1-5 of 66 (next | show all)
I have to say, this guy is a writer on par with Raymond Chandler, that other master of the Noir genre. The translator was no slouch, either. I wasn't left with the feeling that something was missing, although I think a glossary of Icelandic terms used in the book would have helped. However, I was able to infer what was meant by many of the terms by the context, or it became clear with further reading of the book.

The story spans a 70-year period in Iceland, from World War II to the turn of this century. The novel starts with a scene of a children's birthday party, where a baby is chewing on what looks like a white stone. An observant medical student takes notice, and upon inspection, he realizes it's actually a human rib bone. A search for the grave ensues by the birthday guests and the birthday boy's mother. The police are called, and that's how Erlendur gets involved in the case.

The story involves graphic scenes of domestic violence. While there aren't graphic depictions of physical violence against children, the verbal abuse is pretty awful. Erlendur's daughter is a drug user, so that life is depicted as well.

The writing was so good, that I was swept up in the story, even though on an emotional level, it wasn't easy reading. The plot jumps back and forth between the turn of the millennium and the American occupation of Iceland during World War II. This period of history especially interested me, because my mother spent part of World War II in Iceland, when she was prevented from returning to her native Norway by the Nazi occupation of that country. It was a fascinating period of time in Iceland's history, because they were in danger of being invaded by the Nazis and the allied troops were there to protect them. Along with the influx of soldiers, came a housing shortage, which resulted in some strange living arrangements for people, such as the family in the book.

More than that, I don't want to say, because I don't want to spoil the plot for anyone. But lovers of Scandinavian crime fiction, or "Ice Noir" as I like to call it (still hoping that term will catch on!) will enjoy this book, as will anyone who enjoys a good mystery that is well-written. ( )
  harrietbrown | Feb 26, 2016 |
The discovery of an unmarked grave at a building site outside Reykjavik starts an investigation into the past. A row of red currant bushes is the only indication left of a house that stood not too far from the gravesite. While the archeologists slowly dig out the corpse and the past is put into context piece by piece, Erlendur also has to deal with a phone call for help from his estranged daughter.

It took me a while to get into the story, but after that this was a very satisfying read. The story is told on various levels - the story of the family that lived on the hill, the story of Erlendur and his family, the context of the story of Reykjavik during World War II. Many relationships are explored before the backdrop of this story.
( )
  sushicat | Jan 14, 2016 |
The back story was interesting, but everything about this "mystery" was very predictable. If you like genuine mysteries, skip this one. ( )
  Lindoula | Dec 27, 2015 |
The discovery of two skeletons at a construction site in suburban Reykjavik leads Erlendur and his colleagues to a case of severe and terrifying domestic violence dating back to World War II, when American troops were posted in Iceland. There's no urgency to solving the crime, given that it's decades old, but there are several mysteries that need resolving. ( )
  Hanneri | Dec 7, 2015 |
another very good Scandinavian author, detective. I highly recommend the series. ( )
  Suze005 | Oct 24, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 66 (next | show all)
With only two of his novels currently circulating in English translation, Arnaldur Indridason puts Iceland on the map as a major destination for enthusiasts of Nordic crime fiction.The author raises the same ghosts in SILENCE OF THE GRAVE applying his austere style to a crime of such emotional breadth and sociological complexity that it acquires the sweep and consequence of epic storytelling.

 
The title of Arnaldur Indridason' s new book, Silence of the Grave , gives an indication of the case that confronts the Icelandic detective Erlendur and his colleagues in the Reykjavik police: the discovery of a skeleton on the outskirts of the city. It is a fascinating mystery, which develops slowly while we learn more about the unhappy Erlendur and his relationship with his estranged family. Indridason's low-key style is far from the fast-moving thrillers that fill the best-seller lists, but he's a writer worth seeking out.

 

» Add other authors (32 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Arnaldur Indriðasonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Guidall, GeorgeNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Scudder, BernardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Shutterstock.comCover imagesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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He knew at once it was a human bone, when he took it from the baby who was sitting on the floor chewing it.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312427328, Paperback)

 
Winner of the CWA Gold Dagger Award
 
Inspector Erlendur returns in this gripping Icelandic thriller When a skeleton is discovered half-buried in a construction site outside of Reykjavík, Inspector Erlendur finds himself knee-deep in both a crime scene and an archeological dig. Bone by bone, the body is unearthed, and the brutalizing history of a family who lived near the building site comes to light along with it. Was the skeleton a man or a woman, a victim or a killer, and is this a simple case of murder or a long-concealed act of justice? As Erlendur tries to crack this cold case, he must also save his drug-addicted daughter from self destruction and somehow glue his hopelessly fractured family back together.
 
Like the chilly Nordic mysteries of Henning Mankell and Karen Fossum, Arnaldur Indridason delivers a stark police procedural full of humanity and pathos, a classic noir from a very cold place.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:46 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

"In Silence of the Grave, a corpse is found on a hill outside the city, and Detective Inspector Erlendur Sveinsson and his team think the body may have been buried for some years." "While Erlendur struggles to hold together the crumbling fragments of his own family, slowly but surely he finds out the truth about another unhappy family. Few people are still alive who can tell the tale, but even secrets taken to the grave cannot remain hidden forever."--BOOK JACKE… (more)

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