Red Snow by Will Dean
|Red Snow by Will Dean|
|Reviewer: Luke Marlowe|
|Summary: After a thrillingly good debut in Dark Pines, Journalist Tuva Moodyson returns in Red Snow – a sophomore novel that exceeds expectations, and truly secures Tuva a spot as a heroine readers will be seeking to read more of for a very long time.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 400||Date: January 2019|
|Publisher: Point Blank|
|External links: Author's website|
Life in the small town of Gavrik is trying to return to normal, following the grim events of Dark Pines. As Tuva prepares to move on from both the death of her mother and her small hometown, she is drawn into another dark investigation. One suicide, and one murder. Are they connected? With black liquorice coins covering the murdered man's eyes, the hashtag #ferryman starts trending, and the local people stocking up on ammunition. With only a fortnight to investigate before moving to the South, Tuva is further troubled by a blizzard that descends on the town, cutting Gavrik off from the larger world. Desperate to stop the killer, Tuva must go delve deep into the heart of the community – but who's to say the Ferryman will let her go?
The character of Tuva Moodyson first appeared in Dark Pines – a terrific thriller that plunged readers deep into the dark Swedish forest – where intrepid local reporter Tuva Moodyson accompanied them on a murder mystery that blended chilling crimes with an incredibly depicted sense of a community in crisis - and it is to author Dean's credit that the town of Gavrik is a big a character here as any other.
Tuva herself is a cut above the rest when it comes to lead characters in a crime novel – with Dean ensuring that she has just the right amount of difficulties and neuroses that the reader would be expecting from this sort of read, but combines those with brilliantly drawn character in order to establish Tuva as a memorable, driven and an intelligent lead who drives the plot along with her dogged determination. She's also grounded and realistic – and little touches like her love for spicy Thai food and her need for a drink in order to sleep, make her a character who remains relatable for the reader – no matter how dark the circumstances she's investigating.
As in Dark Pines, Tuva's deafness plays a considerable role in the story – but what's particularly fascinating is how Dean conveys this to the reader. At times it serves to cruelly isolate both Tuva and the reader, and at others, it's something comforting for her – a comfort blanket of silence that separates herself from the dangerous world outside. It's essential to note that Dean does not use Tuva's deafness as a disability – it's something she lives with and utilises in the best way possible.
Plotwise, Red Snow continues to explore the inhabitants of Gavrik, and the secrets that lie hidden behind the closed curtains of those in the town. A heavy layer of snow and a seemingly constant darkness ensure that the town gains an almost eerie feel – yet in exploring the inhabitants of such a place, Dean ensures that his story feels rooted in truth, and as such the reader sees human behaviour explored in a variety of nuances and different ways, as the citizens of Gavrik deal with death, exposed pasts, and the consequences of crime on such a small town.
This tale opens with a suicide – and Dean's writing gets dark icy claws into the reader from the first page, not letting go until well after the book has been finished. The pace of the plot is considerable – building to a climax that left me rather breathless. Things end in an interesting way too – I'll be intrigued to see where Tuva's adventures go next.
If this book appeals then you might also enjoy The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson and Reg Keeland (translator). We also have a review of the third book in the series.
You can read more book reviews or buy Red Snow by Will Dean at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Red Snow by Will Dean at Amazon.com.
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