The Blind Goddess by Anne Holt

Cover of The Blind Goddess

Having decided to move my book write ups over to StoryGraph, I thought I’d try out the Reading Challenges feature they have there. The obvious place to start is with the on boarding challenge which is basically a guided tour of their recommendations features. The first one I chose was “Read a book which fits all of the criteria from your reading profile”, i.e. basically “let us find you something that you already like”. They look at the books I’ve added and tell me that I am someone who “Mainly reads fiction books that are mysterious, reflective, and dark. Typically chooses slow-paced books that are 300-499 pages long.”. I was a bit dubious about trying this as I’d loaded in 20+ years of my reading material but I’ve been attempting to read different stuff lately. I had a flick through the recs and this book met the spec and was by an author I hadn’t come across and was available in my online library. 

It’s set in 1991 in Oslo and is billed as #1 in the Hanne Wilhelmsen series. She’s a police detective and the plot starts with a murder victim who is discovered by a dog-walking lawyer. Hanne herself takes a while to turn up and her colleague Håkon Sand seems to be as big a character in the book as she is. I thought the plot was pretty good – drug dealers and dodgy lawyers – it twisted but not in the direction I was expecting it to.  Håkon is a police attorney rather than a detective and I liked the focus on the legal side of things rather than just on the detective work. The digital edition I read had confusing jumps in the plot where I expect there were line gaps in the original print that got elided here. Once I realised there were changes in viewpoint that weren’t being demarcated and watched out for them the book got much easier  to read. 

As a trial of StoryGraph’s engine I’m reasonably pleased with this, it was definitely the sort of thing that I enjoy and wasn’t something I had found elsewhere even though it’s 30 years old. 

More information about this book can be found on storygraph.

Read on July 25, 2022

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