FORTY DAYS WITHOUT SHADOW

Written by Oliver Truc

Review written by Gwen Moffat

Gwen Moffat lives in Cumbria. Her novels are set in remote communities ranging from the Hebrides to the American West. The crimes fit their environment, swelling that dreadful record of sin in the smiling countryside cited by Sherlock Holmes. The style echoes this: rustic charm masking horror.


FORTY DAYS WITHOUT SHADOW
Trapdoor
RRP: £12.99
Released: 1st April 2014
Trade pbk

In seventeenth century Lapland an old Sami is hunted down and lynched by a Christian mob. Racism is less overt now despite its being enforced by greed. In a country exploited by big business there is little regard for indigenous people.

Nothing new there except that it’s unexpected in Father Christmas land – although here the existence of the Reindeer Police smacks of Toytown. However, these reindeer are flesh and blood and, like Masai cattle, they represent the owner’s wealth. Herds are territorial and, large or small, individually or family-owned, they are monitored by the police and owners compensated for beasts killed on the roads. Despite thefts of neighbours’ unmarked animals, even rustling, there is no parallel with hill farming or the American West. In Lapland it’s dark for forty days and on the day the sun returns it’s for twenty seven minutes max. The cold is stultifying.

In Truc’s book on the day the sun reappears in the town of Kautokeino (pop. 2000) a sacred drum is stolen from the museum and the following day a lecherous old herder is murdered. The cops detailed to investigate are from the Reindeer Police: a 50-year-old Sami, Klemet Nanga, and Nina Nansen, aged 20. Nina is fresh out of the police academy: clever and imaginative despite her training, while Klemet is pragmatic but retaining strong bonds with his native culture. Prickly on the surface, basically the pair function well, sensing a link between the theft and murder, suggesting that the thief could be the killer.

In a community that is more or less closed there is a plethora of suspects. Feuding herders are favoured by the obnoxious Deputy Superintendent of the State Police; there is a creepy pastor, a rabid Sami activist, a lewd Russian truck driver, not to mention a French geologist with a record concerning under-age girls. And there is Berit, an abused farm servant who holds secrets, and the sins of this bleak place go back four centuries.

By no means a great work of literature but, heavy as it is, and suffering from a simplified style, the world that’s depicted, daunting and dark like its inhabitants, grips against the reader’s will. Fiction it may be but the facts exist. Whether in the Americas, Africa or the frozen Arctic the native people were there first, but for how much longer?

Translated by Louise Rogers LaLaurie

why wife cheated why people cheat online affair
spy on phones spyware on android phones phone tracking app
why do women cheat on their husbands infidelity marriage affairs
instant chlamydia test buy gonorrhea treatment online chlamydia symptoms in women
spyware apps for android crossbordercapital.com cell spy monitoring software
i need to cheat on my girlfriend go i cheated on my girlfriend and i want her back
my husband cheated again survivingediscovery.com my husband cheats
why do wife cheat married and want to cheat all wives cheat
rite aid photo coupons medication coupons printable walgreens transfer prescription coupon
viagra 200mg read thyroxine
the unfaithful husband married men dating married men that cheat
discount coupons for prescriptions floridafriendlyplants.com coupons for prescriptions
coupons for drugs fyter.cn viagra coupon 2016
prescription drug cards eblogin.com prescription coupons
how many abortions can a woman have pill for abortion abortion clinic in atlanta
grocery discount coupons link define abortion
cialis coupons from lilly funtimeleisure.co.uk free coupon for cialis
prescription discount coupons printable coupons for cialis prescriptions coupons
where to buy naltrexone naltrexone alcoholism medication naltrexone uses
valtrex alkohol valtrex alkohol valtrex 1000
free printable cialis coupons selba.ca discount coupons for cialis
cialis free coupon lilly cialis coupon prescription coupons
discount drug coupon cialis sample coupon internet drug coupons
naltrexone off label uses alcohol antagonist low dose naltrexone reviews


Home
Book Reviews
Features
Interviews
News
Columns
Authors
Competitions
Blog
Shop
About Us
Contact Us

Privacy Policy | Contact Shots Editor

THIS WEBSITE IS © SHOTS COLLECTIVE. NOT TO BE REPRODUCED ELECTRONICALLY EITHER WHOLLY OR IN PART WITHOUT PRIOR PERMISSION OF THE EDITOR.