One June night, in a small town gripped by a sweltering heat wave, a young man is forced off the road and into the river. Robert Bell, a disillusioned local journalist with a dry sense of humour and an escalating drink problem, leaves behind the banality of his quiet office to investigate the mysterious death. Simmering racial tensions in the town threaten to boil over and local Serbian immigrants become the easy targets for blame. Robert’s own brother, Frank, is the investigating police officer, but they have a problem sharing information. And another darker, hidden problem; Robert’s in love with the one woman he can’t have: Frank’s wife Irene. Their affair continues through the stifling heat until one morning Irene vanishes. Is her disappearance somehow linked to the young man’s death? Soon Robert is drawn deeper into the desperate hunt for a murderer and, as the storm clouds gather, finds some uncomfortable truths about his seemingly quiet community.
The Riverton Prize / The Golden Gun for the best Norwegian crime fiction 2005.
‘A finely wrought political novel suggestive at times of American big-city crime.’Aftenposten
‘A superbly told story of a journalist working in the shadow of death and love.’Stavanger Aftenblad
‘A perceptively written thriller flavoured with tragedy and comedy and spiced with piquantly politicized pepper.’Adresseavisen