Words, writers and writing

The past few weeks have been something of a Nordic escape – a binge into a series of crime novels written by Jorn Lier Horst. By my reckoning he’s the new Henning Mankell.  He makes a worthy successor to that supreme leader of the Nordic Noir brigade who started really catching our attention only a few decades back. Until then they had remained a secret pleasure to all but those fluent in the authors’ respective tongues. After all, how many Brits know a word of Swedish, Danish, Norwegian or Finnish? Most of them can hardly squeeze out a mangled version… Continue reading

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There is a new game afoot among crime fiction afficionados. Especially those who believe there’s nothing to match the rapidly expanding sector known as tartan noir. It is called Spot the Join. Or Find the Seam. Even Detect the Author. Or any of the many possible similar phrases. My own variation on this theme is Where’s the Rankin? Any number can play and the rules are simple: obtain a copy of The Dark Remains (Canongate Books, paperback, 2022) and decide where today’s supreme master of Scottish crime fiction, Ian Rankin, takes over from  William McIlvanney, the maestro who inspired Rankin… Continue reading