My Soul to Take – Iceland – Yrsa Sigurdardottir

my-soul-to-take

Prepare to be spooked and chilled in Iceland’s chilly landscape…..

Story in a nutshell

A mystery in the chilly, snowy and icy landscape of mystery, murder, hauntings and a lot of buried consequences..

1940s. Rural Iceland – Someone cruelly murders a young innocent girl.

Present day – a hotel has been built near where the girl was killed (although at this stage no one knows about her. The owner of the resort hotel is not happy and says the place is haunted amongst other faults. Thora Gudmundsdottir, lawyer and mother is asked to look into the matter and so she does.

There is an awful lot more guests at this hotel than it would first appear…

This story is awash in possible motives, history, family gothic, etc. It is well constructed, with perfect pacing. If you love a good mystery, you will love this one.

Place and setting

The hotel and spa - this hotel might be nice to experience the landscape of the novel /the mountain Kirkjufell - it stood alone in the sea/the Hvalfjörður tunnel - part of the journey you would travel to to snaefellsnes/ Reykjavik and the Fossvogur cemetery
The hotel and spa – this hotel might be nice to experience the landscape of the novel /the mountain Kirkjufell – it stood alone in the sea/the Hvalfjörður tunnel – part of the journey you would travel to to snaefellsnes from the capital/
Reykjavik and the Fossvogur /Gufunes cemetery

Snaefellsnes on Iceland’s west coast provides the ideal landscape for a story built on superstition local folklore as well as snowy and chilly soil. the book itself is called  The story of Iceland due to the level of atmosphere and evocative aspects to the writing   – around the culture and the history of the island as well as the people and the landscape of course.

The Snæfellsnes  is also known as Iceland in Miniature, because many national sights of Iceland that are popular and well known are actually located here including the Snæfellsjökull volcano. You can see it quite clearly fro the capital city Reykjavik on a good day and another exciting fact – its the setting of the novel Journey to the Centre of The Earth by Jules Verne!

Well, if you of a nervous disposition you may want to skip certain parts when reading this as, well, the sound of babies crying in the fog for example is not something you forget easily.

The supernatural theme in this book is quite fascinating though so I persevered as there’s something about a building on the old grounds of an area which has a strange and spooky history.

The air of strange and gruesome goings on starts when you realise just how the victim has been found murdered. Even before I got to that point though – the very first chapter seen through the eyes of a small frightened child was perhaps one of the most chilling for what it leads to.

I’m amazed I was able to continue reading  – as vivid as my imagination is – but I had to know what happened to her!

The book is interesting on so many levels – the Icelandic setting is only one of them – but the culture and heritage as well as the mythology alluded to is quite interesting and there were many things I felt I discovered from the book. The role of Nazism in Iceland during the war was one.

Bbrrrrr Iceland is very chilly indeed!

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