A chance meeting on the moors with a garrulous old farmer rekindles Insp. Erlendur Sveinsson’s interest in a decades-old missing-person case in Indridason’s moody novel featuring the Reykjavík policeman, the ninth to be published in the U.S. (after 2013’s Black Skies). A young woman named Matthildur appears to have vanished while trying to cross the Hraevarskörd Pass during a sudden whiteout, similar to one that swallowed up Erlendur’s younger brother, Bergur, when they were boys. Erlendur finds a surprising number of leads and even evidence at this late date, increasingly suggesting that Matthildur was murdered. But the brooding loner can’t help circling back to his brother while he camps out in the ruins of their family’s home, especially as the frigid nights transport him into an almost hallucinatory state. Solid procedural combines with Icelandic ghost story for a chilling tale of the extremes to which people can be pushed in an unforgiving place. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 05/19/2014 Release date: 08/26/2014 Genre: Fiction
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