Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!
On my way to work tonight I drove through a light swirling of the white stuff and was hoping against hope that on my return journey I might find the fields and hills around my home transformed to a twinkly white wonderland. It’s nearly 4am as I write this, and unless there’s a miracle in the final two hours of my shift, home will be as muddy and green as it was when I left it. Ho hum.
I’m not really surprised. Here in West Wales there has been a disappointing lack of snow over the past few years, so I have turned to books to provide the icy chill I so crave – with a spot of murder thrown in for good measure (in the books that is!). A few weeks ago, Karen at Orenda Books sent me a copy of the latest installment of Ragnar Jónasson’s Dark Iceland series, White Out (2017, translated by Quentin Bates) which I’ve been saving for December. I might not be able to bank on snowfall here in Wales, but Jónasson’s elemental thrillers along with the characters that populate them are so firmly defined by place – the rugged beauty of an unforgiving landscape, and the extreme weather that hones it, that I know it’s certain to evoke enough ‘bleak midwinter’ to see me through to the New Year.
White Out isn’t the only Icelandic title I have in store. I also have Arnaldur Indriðason’s Hypothermia, book 6 of his Reykjavik Murder Mysteries, and Yrsa Sigurðardóttir’s My Soul to Take, the second of her Thóra Gudmundsdóttir crime novels. I have a hardback copy which is a bit of a brick, so to avoid emergency appointments with the chiropractor due to my lugging it around in my handbag, I shall save it for a pyjama day.
My other reads are Mystery in White by J. Jefferson Farjeon, which is a Christmassy British Library Crime Classic, so bound to be fabulously festive especially when paired up with a mince pie or two, and Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson, which I keep almost reading but have never quite got there. I have a feeling its time has come.
So, that’s my Christmas cache sorted, but what literary lovelies do you have lined up to see you through to the New Year?