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text 2018-09-18 14:51
Reading progress update: I've read 47%. - I can't continue with this at the moment
The Ice Beneath Her: A Novel - Elizabeth Clark Wessel,Camilla Grebe

I'm reading this for the Modern Noir square but even though I'm almost halfway through, I'm calling a halt and finding a substitute book.


There's nothing wrong with "The Ice Beneath Her". It's well written, has strong characters and a plot that is in no hurry to give up its secrets but it's BLEAK.


Unlike normal whodunnits, this one isn't really focusing much on solving a murder. Instead, it's using the discovery of a decapitated woman to take me on a journey about betrayal and abuse. The three characters from whose point of view the story is told are all broken. The men are almost all bullying predatory narcissists - including the good guys. And they all have either been betrayed or have betrayed others in unforgivable ways.


I will finish this book - but not now.


I've reached the point where I hesitate to listen to the audiobook as I make my way through my day because I know it will bring me down.


So I'm setting it aside.


Fortunately, the world is full of books I haven't read yet. I searched my TBR pile and came up with something hardboiled and American. It will still be noir, I'm sure, but the kind that entertains partly because it doesn't feel real. I want noir that I know will never happen to me. 


"The Ice Beneath Her" is like a hook in my flesh.


I'm hoping that "Huntress Moon", its replacement for the Modern Noir square, will be more like a double shot expresso on a sleepy morning.

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review 2014-07-06 21:29
Coeur D'alene Waters-Modern noir
Coeur d'Alene Waters - Ned Hayes

This novel is as gritty as the mines that it describes.


Matt Worthson is the investigator assigned to the murder of the police chaplain, Arlen Bowman, who was found dismembered in the bathroom of a fancy resort in Coeur D’alene Idaho. Matt has a troubled past as an alcoholic and almost seems set up for failure in this investigation from the beginning. The officer, Russ White, assigned to help him is retiring shortly and will be running against the current sheriff in the next election. The owner of the resort is just wants it all finished and covered up so there’s no stigma attached to the resort. And some suspect Matt himself of being involved in the murder.


This novel has atmosphere in spades. The whole things feels like an old black and white movie. It has several interwoven stories including the fire in the Sunshine mine 20 years before of which Matt’s father was the hero. The near-by camp of skinheads play a role. Old family rifts and people thought dead long ago all play roles in the story. It is a complex and multi-faceted story which almost gets confusing at times because of the changes of perspective that happen frequently. The mystery of who killed the priest is fairly obvious from the beginning but that doesn’t ruin the flow of the story. There is a lot of foul language so take note if that matters to you. It does to me so that brings it down to 3 1/2 stars from 4.


If you like gritty and what I would call modern noir, this is the book for you.


I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review but then I lost the book and went ahead and bought it on Amazon because I didn’t think it was fair to the author not to review it, so it was given to me and I paid full price for the ebook but either way, this is still my honest review.

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