Night Shadows by Eva Björg Ægisdóttir trns by Victoria Cribb

Today I hand back to Mandie who has a review of Night Shadows, the latest novel from Eva Björg Ægisdóttir . I shared my thoughts last month as part of the tour and you can read them here. Here’s what the book is all about:

Source: Advance Reader Copy
Release Date: 21 July 2022
Publisher: Orenda Books

About the Book

The small community of Akranes is devastated when a young man dies in a mysterious house fire, and when Detective Elma and her colleagues from West Iceland CID discover the fire was arson, they become embroiled in an increasingly perplexing case involving multiple suspects. What’s more, the dead man’s final online search raises fears that they could be investigating not one murder, but two.

A few months before the fire, a young Dutch woman takes a job as an au pair in Iceland, desperate to make a new life for herself after the death of her father. But the seemingly perfect family who employs her turns out to have problems of its own and she soon discovers she is running out of people to turn to.

As the police begin to home in on the truth, Elma, already struggling to come to terms with a life-changing event, finds herself in mortal danger as it becomes clear that someone has secrets they’ll do anything to hide…

Mandie’s Thoughts

Night Shadows id the third book in the Forbidden Iceland series and this time Elma is investigating the death of someone in a house fire. When it becomes apparent that the death was no accident Elma has a job on her hands trying to work out who was responsible and why. What is certain is that several people seem to be hiding things. The relevance to the investigation is yet to be determined. Added to this Elma has her own personal issues to deal with, ones that will have a long-term effect on her personally and professionally. 

The book takes the reader not just into the heart of the investigation but also into the lives of all those involved so that you get the feeling that you understand the characters. Each one of them is affected by the events and the way the book goes between the present investigation and the events leading up to the fire give the reader plenty to think about and plenty of suspects. The short chapters give a feeling of a faster pace yet the story itself appears to contradict this. The more I read the more I became immersed in the community that was trying to deal with the aftermath of the fire. 

Elma is a character that intrigues me. In some respects, she is quite focused especially when it comes to her work, but on a personal level she is often filled with doubt about her abilities and her feelings. As we see more of her personal life the more I hope she learns to accept things and believe in herself. 

Night Shadows is as much a book about family and friendships as it is a police procedural and I think that Eva’s descriptive style truly captures bot this and the town that it is set in so even if you have never been to Iceland you can still picture the locations. What we are given is an almost honest view of society where the picture painted to the outsider can often be very different to the truth and how the lies can quickly unravel. I have really grown to love the writing style of Eva Björg Ægisdóttir and certainly hope there is more to come in the series as I really want to see how Elma manages what is in store for her future.

About the Author

Born in Akranes in 1988, Eva moved to Trondheim, Norway to study her MSc in Globalisation when she was 25. After moving back home having completed her MSc, she knew it was time to start working on her novel. Eva has wanted to write books since she was 15 years old, having won a short story contest in Iceland. Eva worked as a stewardess to make ends meet while she wrote her first novel, The Creak on the Stairs. The book went on to win the CWA Debut Dagger, the Blackbird Award, was shortlisted (twice) for the Capital Crime Readers’ Awards, and became a number one bestseller in Iceland. The critically acclaimed Girls Who Lie (book two in the Forbidden Iceland series) soon followed, with Night Shadows (book three) following suit in July 2022. Eva lives with her husband and three children in Reykjavík.

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