By Member Susan Cantamessa

Our book clubbers met on Zoom last Tuesday to discuss Silence of the Grave by Arnaldur Indridason. Set in Iceland, it is the second book in a crime series of the ‘Nordic Noir’ variety involving Detective Erlendur.

Bones are found at a construction site outside Reykjavik. While archaeologists slowly unearth the skeleton, Detective Erlendur and his team (knowing only that the skeleton has been in the ground for 50 or 60 years) try to find out who lived in the area and may have gone missing at that time. Is the skeleton a young woman thought to have committed suicide around then? Or a member of a family who lived nearby, a woman and her children who were victims of physical and psychological abuse by the husband/father? Alongside the investigation, we learn about Erlendur’s personal problems and ghosts of the past.

Most clubbers thought the book was cleverly constructed and suspenseful but for many, it was too unrelentingly dark.  The graphic descriptions of domestic violence and its impact on the victims were confronting. Ratings varied from 5/10 to 7/10.  Three word summaries included ‘Violent, Confronting, Gripping’ and ‘Fierce and Dark’.

Next up 17:30 Wednesday 27 April is Killing Sydney by Elizabeth Farrelly, well known as the former fortnightly architecture columnist for the Sydney Morning Herald.

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