Author Q and A: Thomas Enger (Killed)

thumbnail_KILLED COVER FinalRecently  I was lucky enough to read Thomas Enger’s latest novel, Killed. I’m a massive lover of good quality crime fiction and with this one being predicted as a ‘Nordic Noir classic’, I was immediately intrigued. If you’ve seen my full length review here, you’ll know by now how much I truly enjoyed this book. It’s brilliantly written with the perfect balance between prose and plot; Enger truly deserved all of the praise he has been given. When I was granted the opportunity to interview the author for the novels upcoming blog tour I was ecstatic. In today’s post I am finally able to share with you the author’s answers to my questions, and I can only hope it will make you as excited to read the novel as I was!

1. Killed is the fifth and final installment in the Henning Juul series which follows a man who is desperate for answers concerning the murder of his young son. How did the initial idea first present itself to you? Did you always envision this as a series of books?

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Review: Trying by Emily Phillips

IMG_7982[1]If I had to describe my reading tastes I would say that it’s pretty literary in style. Whilst I read a lot of genre fiction (fantasy and crime being particular favourites) the ones which stand out always seem to be those with a greater sense of finesse to their writing. Whilst this is the case, I can freely admit that I’m not adverse to the odd ‘lighter’ read every now and then, and I do quite often enjoy a ‘chick-lit’ book when I’m in the right mood.

Trying, the debut novel by Emily Phillips, was a book which most definitely fell into the latter category. It follows the main characters of Olivia and Felix, a married couple who are trying to have a baby. They’ve planned their lives around such expectations, moving house and beginning a sex life with military precision in the hopes of what may soon come to fruition. Whilst the tell tale signs of success remain absent, they are surrounded by friends whose families are ever growing, the couple forced to watch jealously on the sidelines. Amidst their hopes, Olivia is also trying desperately for a promotion at work, things becoming ever more complicated by the arrival of a new boss which may start Olivia down a dangerous path which could see her risk it all. In the midst of trying to get a promotion, trying to maintain her marriage and trying for a baby, can Olivia really have it all?

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Review: Walking Wounded by Sheila Llewellyn

IMG_7950[1]I’ve read and enjoyed quite a few books lately which have focused upon World War Two in differing ways. In The Unwomanly Face of War we had a non-fiction book focusing on the voices of women who actually fought in the war for the Soviet Union. In There Was A Time we saw a close knit community witnessing the affects the war had upon such a place. When I received Walking Wounded by Sheila Llewellyn, I was really intrigued to read about yet another different aspect of the war and what it has done to those who lived through it. There are so many different voices and stories to be told, and getting to discover new aspects of such a monumental piece of history always amazes me.

Set against the backdrop of the struggling Northfield Military Psychiatric Hosptial in 1947, Walking Wounded is a novel which follows the lives of two very different men; one a doctor and one the patient. David Reece is a young man whose dreams of journalism were shattered with the start of the war. Despite its end, the war continues to haunt David, his traumatic experiences in Burma refusing to be left behind. Then we have Daniel Carter, one of the senior psychiatrists at the hospital and the man in charge of treating David Reece. Despite being the one who should be giving the treatment, Daniel has his own inner turmoil’s, suffering through both his own past and the terrible memories of his patients.

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Review: City of Masks by S. D. Sykes

IMG_7919[1]Last April I visited Venice with my two best friends. It was an amazing trip which opened my eyes to the beauty of this city, even with the battle against the mass midday crowds in the main square! Venice is an entirely unique experience, a city situated across a group of 118 small islands linked by more than 400 bridges. It’s a complete maze to the novice, but wrapping in charm all the same. When S. D. Sykes new novel, City of Masks, arrived on my doorstep I was immediately excited. Not only was it historical fiction, a genre I live for, but it’s also set in medieval Venice.

The setting massively sparked my interest in the book and fueled a desire to return to this city once more, but the blurb also arrested my attention. It tells of Oswald de Lacy (Lord Sommerhill), a man stuck in Venice whilst the Hungarian siege prevents a safe departure. Oswald is keen to escape the haunting shadows of his past, but when he stumbles across a murdered man he is dragged into an investigation which leads him deep beneath the decadence of this city. With the likes of the Signori di Notte, the feared secret police, to contend with, OSlwald is keep to avoid attention, but all too quickly he learns that he is not the only one with something to hide. The city holds secrets, deadly ones, and the people of Venice are hiding behinds masks which are used for more than their carnivals.

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The Dough Thrower, Cardiff

IMG_7660When your boyfriend (now fiancé!) is a full time chef working in a restaurant your local food bloggers love, its to be expected that food would play a large role in our lives. We’re both massive foodies, and if days off aren’t spent with him cooking and me baking, its more than likely that we’re dining out for food. Even so, despite our versatile taste buds and the vast amount of food he’s cooked for me, there’s still one thing which is undoubtedly my favourite meal; pizza.

We’re pretty lucky here in Cardiff as we have quite a few places where we can get a stand out pizza – Dusty Knuckle, Calabrisella and Cafe Citta are just some which spring to mind. When I realised another pizza centered venue was opening up under the rather apt name of The Dough Thrower, I was immediately intrigued. Sadly, with a hectic work period and a partner who works incredibly unsociable hours, its taken me quite a while to finally sample their food. Fear not, for it was definitely worth the wait!

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Review: Killed by Thomas Enger

IMG_7891[1]If you’ve been a reader of this blog for any length of time, you’ll probably know by now how much I love the Millenium trilogy by Stieg Larsson. I’m a huge lover of crime fiction, but all too often the plots are predictable and the characters are lacking in substance. This was certainly not the case with Larsson’s high concept crime series, and I’ve been on the lookout for something that can rival it for a while now. When I was kindly sent over a copy of Thomas Enger’s latest crime novel, Killed, a book compared in its praise to Larsson’s own series, I was thrilled . . . if slightly wary. Scandinavian and Nordic crime has been getting a lot of well deserved praise lately, in both literature and TV, so with high expectations I settled into this ‘Nordic Noir classic’.

The premise itself is extremely compelling; we are given Henning Juul, a crime reporter whose life was destroyed when his young son was murdered in a deliberate arson attack. Desperate to find the killers, Henning follows whatever trails he can to get answers, delving into the darkest corners of society. With his ex-wife pregnant with another man’s child, his sister somehow implicated in the fire which killed his son, and secrets wrapped around everything he thought he knew, Henning’s life is about to become ever more deadly in his quest for the truth. Yet the past is following his every move, determined to keep any answers firmly enveloped in the shadows.

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