Until thy wrath be past by Åsa Larsson

Until thy wrath be past by Åsa Larsson

Åsa Larsson is a swedish crime writer ,she worked as a tax lawyer before becoming a full-time writer .This is her fourth book to be translated into english .Her grandfather was a famous Swedish skier and she has host radio shows in her native Sweden this book features Rebecka Martinsson as have some of her earlier books .She won the best Swedish crime book in 2004 for Blood spilled another from this series ,also the first book in the series Solstorm was made into a film in Sweden .

So Rebecka Martinsson is a Prosecutor in the far north of Sweden ,this job is a cross between our C.I.D and the crown prosecution service they direct the police how to investigate criminal cases deciding when arrests need to be made in the case her police officer is another women Anna-Maria Mella .They are investigating the murder of a young women called Wilma Peterson her body appeared in the river as the spring thaw began .Their investigation draws them to a plane that went missing in the 1940’s people working with the germans during the second world wae ,a pair of brothers that made a lot of  money at the time ,these brothers were very intimating to the locals and still via the sons have an influence in the area the crime happen ,a weird local that knows more than he is saying ,the attitude of the male colleagues towards them and also the friction in the own relationship all add to this book being a real page turner.Why were Wilma and her boyfriend where they were is there a missing crashed german plane from the war  all these are questions you find the answer to in the book .

On sunday someone phoned the police station in Kiruna to say that he had information about the two kids who had featured in the late night news bulletin the day before .He said his was Goran Sillfors .

“I don’t know if what I have to tell you is all that significant” ,he said , “But you said yourselves ,rather a call too many tan one too few ,so i thought..”

A lead on the case maybe ?

So what did I make of until thy wrath be past the title being a quote from the bible well ,I ve read other nordic crime books over the last few years and this one needs to sit near the top of the pile in the leads Rebecka and Anna Maria she has two different female characters one smart that has worked to be were she is ,the other has a family both have men in their lives ,she makes them leap of the page into flesh and blood .I also loved the way she brought the north of Sweden to life describing the scenery so beautifully .

Frozen puddles and frostbitten moss crackled beneath our feet alanen Vittangivaara loomed to our left

or

frost had nipped at every blade of grass,every twig ,making them brittle and crispy white .Sprays of lingonberry and stunted juniper bushes were a dull shade of wintry green .

lingonberry

She catches the interaction between characters so well the slight tension between the women .The way they can be dismissed by their male counter parts in the police .The fear the brothers cause then and now .The crime is realistic which is more than I can say of some of the other nordic crime novels I ve read .I enjoyed reading female leads that I could get on with as a male reader I sometimes struggle with female leads but these two were wonderful ,also as a coffee drinker I must note they like their lot of coffee . So better tha Harry hole for me ,yes she is the other Larsson but Rebecka is not another Lisbeth Salander she is a new face for Nordic crime .and this is part of a series but makes great reading by itself .

Have you read this or any in the series ?

What is your favourite Nordic crime novel ?

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World book night top 100 lets make it a fresh list !!!

Beside the sea world book night

This years world book night giveaways are to be decided by us the public by choosing our  top ten books .I looked at the current top 100 and have to agree with Meike from Peirene it is a bit bland and from the perspective of winstonsdad the translation choices which there are at this moment ten book are what I would call the ones people think they should read or put in a list even if they’ve not read to look good (sorry needs to be said) .I love Murakami and Marquez but some diffeernt book here would be great open peoples eyes.Well Meike has suggest if we could all choose Beside the sea by Veronique Olmi  it is a lovely french gem and is one of my all time favourite reads any way ,at moment 35 votes will get it in the top 100 I ve vote so 34 would do it come on lets help the nymph and the lovely ladies of Peirene make the list ,all of us bloggers and tweeters know how much effort this publisher puts into social media and interaction with its readers more than any major publisher does .So put your hand up and say yes I want the small guy to win for once because we all love the underdogs in this country lets for once get them there  ,Meike has written a blog post about this too here ,thanks stu .I will be put up for giving away this time as I was too shy to volunteer last year .

My top ten –

Beside the sea by Veronique Olmi – reason a french gem touching and it will make you gasp if you’ve not read it !

Rings of saturn  by W G Sebald reason started my love of translation and it is a book that can be reread and still make you think .

Don Quixote by Miguel Cervantes – reason the first novel it has all in it that has followed since a true master piece .

Ficciones by Jorge Luis Borges reason he was a genius flash fiction avant grade fiction all look at this as a starting point

If on a winters night a traveller by Italo Calvino reason I love it and I know many people hate it but who can’t love a book that talks to you ?

My century by Gunter grass  – reason  short interlocking pieces covering the 20thcentury from the German master not his best but it is a good insight into Germany .

Cities of red night by William S Burroughs  – reason he was a one off writer this book has all a young guy could want from a book and men shou,ld read more !

The last brother by Nathacha Appananah – reason a unheard corner of post ww2 history jewish refugees stuck on a tropical island told touchingly through two young boys tale .

Goodbye to all that by Robert Graves – reason  my favourite memoir war is bad and read this you know it is ,a poets eye goes to war .

Walden by Henry David Thoreau – reason if more people had read this would the world be the way it is the simple life as he spent time in nature thinking whilst living in a wooden hut .

What are your choices ?

Down the rabbit hole by Juan Pablo Villalobos or (dad I want a pygmy hippo)

Down the rabbit hole by Juan Pablo Villalobos

Source – review copy from &other stories

Translator – Rosalind Harvey

Juan Pablo Villalobos is a Mexican writer ,the studied marketing and spanish literature ,he has an interested in the avant grade having written about Cesar Aira ,he currently lives in Barcelona in Spain  .This is his Debut novel and has already been translated into 8 languages  since it came out last year ,including this English Translation ,that marks the start of a new Press in translation” and other stories ” .They’ll be so happy this was also the first book named on Guardians first book 2011 long list .

So what is this book about well ,dear me I gave a bit away in the title this about Tochtli a child ,well may I say this child is in some ways a normal child wanting thing he can’t have and telling us about his family ,cute you ‘re thing ,well er no cause Tochtli (this means rabbit in mexico main native language ) is the son of a notorious Mexican drugs baron and is well how do I put a little different to normal kids his age  he has the real swords and a real guillotine his house is full of the underworld characters hit men ,prostitutes and dodgy politicians  so when he turns round one day and says he wants a Liberian Pygmy hippopotamus for his collection of animals ,the people round his father’s luruxy hideout start finding a way to do this ,do they succeed well the best way to find out is to rush to the book shop and buy this thrilling ride of a book .

Today Paul Smith ,who hasn’t been to our place for a really long time ,about three months,came round .I found out I actually know fifteen people and not fourteen or fifteen .The thing is I wasn’t sure if Paul smith was still a person or if by now he was a corpse .I had my doubts because of one of Yolcaut’s enigmatic phrases,which he had said when asked once why Paul Smith didn’t come round any more .

“if he’s smart he’ll come back ,if he’s an asshole he won’t ”

You have to give a dark laugh as this is how Tochtli sees the world .

So this book is short seventy pages but hell it packs a punch in those seventy pages .We enter Villalobos dark comic world ,this is black comedy at it’s best Tochtli is a perfect glimpse into the surreal world of the Mexican drug barons as we see his day-to-day life we catch a little glimpse of what is happening in his fathers world and maybe why there at the hideaway at this time as he father tries to step up in his world .Tochtli rabbit hole is a place you wouldn’t want a kid to be but it is his rabbit hole and if he wants something no matter how odd it seems because of his rabbit hole being what it is he may just get it in the end .So I commend And other stories on a great first choice for the press ,these books were chosen as a result of reading groups with people reading books in the original spanish .I first came across via  a e-mail to me fro Stefan from and other ,so have mention them before for their reading groups here  .the translation is crisp and also a nice glossary of some words used in the text at the end which is handy .&other stories allow you to subscribe and via this you can have your name in the future  book s

Have you a book you heard of that you think should be translated ?

Would you read a book in another language to decide if its right for english translation ?

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