Blog Tour: The Ice Swimmer by Kjell Ola Dahl

Today, I’m pleased to be hosting a stop on the blog tour for The Ice Swimmer by Kjell Ola Dahl, published by Orenda Books and translated by Don Bartlett.

Blurb:

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The Oslo Detectives are back in another slice of gripping, dark Nordic Noir, and their new colleague has more at stake than she’s prepared to reveal…

When a dead man is lifted from the freezing waters of Oslo Harbour just before Christmas, Detective Lena Stigersand’s stressful life suddenly becomes even more complicated. Not only is she dealing with a cancer scare, a stalker and an untrustworthy boyfriend, but it seems both a politician and Norway’s security services might be involved in the murder.

With her trusted colleagues, Gunnarstranda and Frølich, at her side, Lena digs deep into the case and finds that it not only goes to the heart of the Norwegian establishment, but it might be rather to close to her personal life for comfort.

What I Say:

Dark, atmospheric and full of tense emotion.

Poor Lena, she’s dealing with a recent health scare which she is unable to put out of her mind and a struggling with new boyfriend, journalist Steffen Gjerstad who she suspects has tipped off her colleagues and misled her. Who can Lena truly trust? All this while trying to discover who the dead man is and why he had been murdered. Could it be for political purposes? Or financial reasons? Or is it something more sinister behind the murder?

I loved this detective story, it has everything you need – a sinister web of lies, treachery, superb characters and a twisty mystery.

I did feel really sorry for Lena as much as she tried she seemed to be blocked at every opportunity as she tried to unravel the mystery, but at least she had her colleagues Gunnarstrada and Frolich to help her. I loved their chemistry together and made them all not only likeable but made the story feel very realistic.

This is the first novel in the Oslo detectives series I have read but even so, I felt it could be read as a stand-alone as I was still able to follow previous events. Kjell Ola Dahl has been described as the godfather of Nordic Noir and I can see why. This is definitely a must read.

This is a dark, emotive and twisty mystery which has been tightly woven, full of surprises and lovable characters – such a fab treat for fans of Nordic Noir!

About the Author:

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One of the godfathers of the Nordic Noir genre, Kjell Ola Dahl was born in 1958 in Gjøvik. He made his debut in 1993, and has since published eleven novels, the most prominent of which is a series of police procedurals cum psychological thrillers featuring investigators Gunnarstranda and Frølich. In 2000 he won the Riverton Prize for The Last Fix and he won both the prestigious Brage and Riverton Prizes for The Courier in 2015. His work has been published in 14 countries and sold over two million copies. He lives in Oslo.

 

The Ice Swimmer is out on Ebook now but will be released in paperback on 30th April 2018. It be ordered from Amazon here. Or preordered from Waterstones here.

Big thanks to Anne Cater and Karen Sullivan for allowing me to be a part of this tour.

Don’t forget to check out all the other stops on this fab blog tour!

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Blog Tour Character Q&A: My Little Eye by Stephanie Marland

Today,  I’m super pleased to be hosting a stop on the blog tour for My Little Eye by Stephanie Marland, who also writes under her name Steph Broadribb and blogs as Crime Thriller Girl. My Little Eye is published by Trapeze and is the first in the Starke and Bell series.

For my stop I have managed to interview Clementine Starke, one of the main protagonist from the novel – and I can tell you she wasn’t very easy to pin down.

But before the interview, here’s the blurb for My Little Eye:

KISS THE GIRLS
A young woman is found dead in her bedroom surrounded by rose petals – the latest victim of ‘The Lover’. Struggling under the weight of an internal investigation, DI Dominic Bell is no closer to discovering the identity of the killer and time is running out.

AND MAKE THEM DIE…
As the murders escalate, Clementine Starke joins an online true crime group determined to take justice in their own hands – to catch the killer before the police. Hiding a dark secret, she takes greater risks to find new evidence and infiltrate the group.

As Starke and Bell get closer to cracking the case neither of them realise they’re being watched. The killer is closer to them than they think, and he has his next victim – Clementine – firmly in his sights.

My Little Eye

 

Over to the Interview:

Location: Clerkenwell.

Interviewer: Rachel Emms, (RE), Reporter for CKT

Interviewee: Clementine Starke, (CS), PHD Researcher

RE: Thanks for meeting with me Clementine, I really appreciate it. Clementine just nodded her head. Might as well just dive in then. What made you want to study online true crime fanatic groups?

CS: The conversations in true crime groups are a lot more interesting than looking at feed full of users posting pictures of their dinner. True crime addicts have such purpose and drive. And anyway, people are fascinating, aren’t they, the way they behave? They give away so much of themselves online, and yet many of them do not even realise what they’re doing. I see it, though. And I see the cracks in the personas they create too. Online you can be anyone you want to be. There’s something liberating about that, something that makes people feel like they are safe to experiment. Or at least a lot of people think that they are safe.

RE: Interesting. You’re part of one aren’t you? Don’t you think you are taking your research a step too far?

CS: I have joined a true crime forum, yes. But going too far – no, I don’t think so – after all, how far is too far? I’m an action researcher not a scientist in a lab coat. I participate alongside my subjects for a deeper immersive experience. The data is richer this way, and my learning from the subjects is fast-tracked. Potentially what I’m doing will be ground breaking.

RE: What types of things have you got up to while you’ve been in the group?

CS: She gives me a hard stare before answering. I’m not at liberty to talk about our investigation in detail. What I can tell you is that we study crime cases, some active and some cold. We investigate them, and we’re very good.

RE: I’d better change tact. Do you think then that the Met are limited in their resources and there should be more online crime fanatics going around solving the case for them? Surely all these people would get in the way?

CS: Well, obviously I’m going to say that I think the idea has potential. Certainly not all groups of true crime fans are like mine. Each of us has a very specific set of skills that we bring to the group which lets us know more facts than the average member of the public, and gets us access to information usually only seen by the police and the medical examiner. Just to be clear, though, I’m not admitting to breaking the law. All I will say is that we bend the law just about as far as it goes.

RE: I lean forward. Since getting to know this group have you changed your opinion about the police?

CS: Why would I? What have you heard? I don’t like what you’re insinuating.

RE: Dead end. I’ll ask about the killer instead, might find out something juicy.  Doesn’t it scare you knowing The Lover is still out there, preying on young women? You’re very brave putting yourself out there to try and catch him or her

CS: It’s not a question of being brave. It’s a question of getting a killer off the street. He needs to be caught, and the police aren’t doing it are they? So we had to step in. I’m confident that we will beat the police at their own game. We’re getting closer.

RE: Can you shed any light on anything you’ve found out from the true crime group that the police have refused to tell the public? Surely some of them have contacts and have found something? I only have the public’s best interests at heart.

CS: I’m sure the police have their reasons for keeping some details secret, and I’m hardly likely to just come out and tell you all that I know, am I? For all I know you could be part of a true crime group as well, you might think you’re some kind of serious rival to True Crime London.

She gives me a serious expression.

CS: Just so you know, you’re not.

RE: Time to push one final time. I don’t think I’m getting anywhere, she definitely keeps her cards close to her chest. Do you have any idea who the murderer is? Surely one of these crime fanatics know? Or maybe it’s one of them?

CS: We have a hypothesis and a number of leads that we’re following. We work as a group, a team, and we pool our information in a special online area set up by our leader, Death Stalker, to serve the collective good. Most of the time, anyway. Just as long as there isn’t any rivalry getting in the way.

RE: With that Clementine checks the time on her phone, stands up and walks off before I can even draw another breath. Guess that’s the end of that interview, but at least I got a name – Death Stalker.

A massive thank you to Stephanie for answering my questions for Clementine – an amazing protagonist!

About the Author:

Stephanie Marland

Stephanie Marland has worked in the University sector for over ten years and published research on how people interact and learn together in virtual environments online. She’s an alumni of the MA in Creative Writing (Crime Fiction) at City University London, and an avid reader of all things crime fiction, blogging about books at http://www.crimethrillergirl.com. Steph also writes the Lori Anderson action thriller series (Deep Down Dead and Deep Blue Trouble) as Steph Broadribb.

To find out more about Stephanie Marland, follow her on twitter @crimethrillgirl.

Intrigued? My Little Eye is out now and can be ordered from Amazon here. Or Waterstones here. It’s a thrilling read!

Don’t forget to check out all the other fabulous stops on this blog tour!

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