I am thrilled to be a part of this fabulous blog tour and share my thoughts on Faithless!
Published: 8th March 2017 (Orenda Books)
Oslo detectives Gunnarstranda and Frølich are back … and this time, it’s personal… When the body of a woman turns up in a dumpster, scalded and wrapped in plastic, Inspector Frank Frølich is shocked to discover that he knows her … and their recent meetings may hold the clue to her murder. As he ponders the tragic events surrounding her death, Frølich’s colleague Gunnarstranda investigates a disturbingly similar cold case involving the murder of a young girl in northern Norway and Frølich is forced to look into his own past to find the answers – and the killer – before he strikes again. Dark, brooding and utterly chilling, Faithless is a breath-taking and atmospheric page-turner that marks the return of an internationally renowned and award-winning series, from one of the fathers of Nordic Noir.
Faithless is part of the Oslo Detectives series featuring Gunnarstranda and Frølich, as this series was originally written in Norwegian, not all of the series have made it (yet, hopefully!) into English however this works wonderfully as a standalone. There is enough recap to bring new readers up to date.
What starts as a simple surveillance operation ends up far more complicated for Frank Frølich when a woman’s body is found scaled and wrapped in plastic in a dumpster….who Frølich happens to be vaguely acquainted to. This is an interesting take on a police procedural as, alongside the investigation itself, Frølich is also fighting with his conscience and moral code considering his clear conflict of interest.
Alongside this murder enquiry, there is also an investigation into the disappearance of a young student with eerie similarities to a cold case.
I’m not going to go into the story too much so as not to ruin the well-plotted unravelling of links and the past crashing into the present but suffice to say there is a lot more than meets the eye.
As I am beginning to realise with Nordic Noir, the pace is of a slower nature but still builds tension beautifully. I really liked Dahl’s writing style which is edgy, realistic and atmospheric. Faithless is brilliantly translated by Don Barlett, the narrative is seamless with little hint that this was first written in Norwegian.
I really enjoyed Faithless and fans of translated fiction and crime will not be disappointed. I will be looking out for more from Dahl and his protagonists Frølich and Gunnarstranda.
One of the fathers 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 he lives in Oslo.