Saturday, November 24, 2012

BOOK: 1222 by Anne Holt

1222: a Hanne Wilhelmsen novel by Anne Holt, 313 pages

A closed room mystery in the spirit of Murder on the Orient Express and And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie. Translated from the Norwegian, this is the eighth book in the Hanne Wilhelmsen series, but the first available in English. Hanne is not very likable in this book, and maybe after following her life up to this point, the reader would be more empathetic to her situation. I mean, she is really cranky, and only very reluctantly gets involved in solving the murder.

The storm that strands the passengers from a train is described so well, and is so claustrophobic, that this reader felt like she was in the middle of a huge blizzard. Norway does winter very dramatically, and Holt sets the mood well. There was a lot going on and Holt kept the characters moving around, and well defined. There were also some very interesting characters introduced, and I would read another book to see how Hanne relates to them and if she stays connected.

It took me a long time to get through this book, which I never like, but in retrospect, there was a lot to like: unique characters, dramatic setting, multi-layered main character dealing with a tough life and a murder mystery where people kept dropping (there was more than one murder).