The Ice Lands by Steinar Bragi (Macmillan) ISBN: 9781447298816
Set in Reykjavik, The Ice Lands tells the story of four friends. Egill, Hrafn, Anna and Vigdis who decide to go on a camping trip to regroup and recover from a very difficult year.
As they leave behind the city and move further into the countryside they are forced to reflect on themselves, their relationships, and decisions they have made. Driving in a dense fog they crash and break down nowhere near to their intended destination. They stumble upon an isolated house, the only inhabitants being an elderly couple.
Trapped in this dwelling until the weather clears, the four are forced to confront tensions amongst themselves. More unsettling is the strange behaviour of the old couple, who barricade themselves in every night. Something has been butchering animals near the house, and as the days stretch out they begin to uncover some unsettling facts. Are they trapped here, and will they ever get back home?
by Steinar Bragi (Macmillan) ISBN 9781447298816
This is an unexpected horror story of four friends who embark on an impulsive journey. Through the journey we learn a lot about who they are and how they ended up there. Hrafn, the driver takes a wrong turn and ends up crashing their Jeep into a farmhouse. Although no one is badly hurt, it’s only the beginning of their horror as they find shelter with a mysterious old couple who board up their windows at night.
Things go from bad to worse as they uncover gruesome secrets about their hosts. From the relatively mute husband, the mysterious picture and hidden room in the house to the dead animals found near the house, the four friends question everything that happens. Tensions flare as old wounds are reopened and relationships are tested.
But Hrafn, Vigdis, Egil and Anna learn that they need to work together in order to survive.
As much as this is a horror story, the book also delves into the political status of the Icelandic society. The violent ending left me with more questions than satisfaction on the book as a whole.