Cover Image: Where Ravens Roost

Where Ravens Roost

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Member Reviews

Interesting Nordic Noir style of book, which explored the characters backgrounds well, and set the scene for the finale.
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I enjoyed this as my first scandi noir novel, however I did guess one of the clues pretty earlier on. I also did not like kjeld as a person and it made it hard for me to properly get into the book
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A scandi noir thriller by Karin Nordin - detective Nygaard is suspended from his job, when he gets a call he can’t ignore. His father Stenar, who suffers from Alzheimer’s and who he hasn’t seen for years, calls to say he has seen a murder.
What follows is a discovery of a body, but there are twists and turns that will keep you on the edge of your seat. There are many secrets in the small town and Nygaard needs to find them out.
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Where Ravens Roost is the first instalment in Karin Nordin's Scandi-noir Detective Kjeld Nygaard series, set in Jämtland, Sweden. Kjeld Nygaard, is a troubled police detective inspector based in Gothenburg who has escaped his home town of Varsund, a mining village in a remote part of western Sweden. Shortly after 11 o'clock one night, Nygaard's estranged father, Stenar, is awoken by the call of ravens and goes outside to check out the noise. Approaching the barn the birds' caws become even louder so with his torch in his hand he stops at the entrance when he hears voices, one angry and mocking, then another, sharp and trill. He believes he knows the owner of one of the voices and that a murder has taken place.

Later, Kjeld receives a muddled voicemail from his father stating that he has witnessed a murder in the barn. He reluctantly returns to Varsund after a twelve-year absence to briefly bring some relief from his mounting troubles in Gothenburg, including the suspension from Gothenburg City Police as a result of reckless behaviour during an arrest, but also to try to rebuild burned bridges. On arrival, his resentful sister, Sara informs him that Stenar has Alzheimer's. When Kjeld speaks to Detective Gunnar Ek from the local police he is advised that Stenar has already reported the matter and officers searched the property, finding nothing. With Stenar's claims dismissed Kjeld follows his instincts and, rooting around in the old barn and rookery, discovers a human tooth in a raven's nest, which convinces him that there may be some truth in his father's account...

This is a compulsive, interesting and well-told tale of Scandinavian crime. The plot twists keep the story fresh throughout and the setting of a remote countryside farmhouse surrounded by dense woodland gives it an unsettling and claustrophobic undertone. There's plenty of intrigue and mystery to grip the reader. Nygaard is deeply flawed with strained family and work relationships and more than a few skeletons in his closet and I'm looking forward to getting to know him better and seeing him develop and evolve as a character. Where Ravens Roost is a dark, atmospheric read that I can recommend without any hesitation.

I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from HQ Digital via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.
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❄Nordic family drama with a criminal twist

4-4.5 🌟 stars
I found this a little long, but it had a lot going on and I did like the plot and main characters.  Kjeld Nygaard, the lead, is a policeman with problems at work and a failed relationship who responds to a disjointed call from his estranged father and hot foots it back to the family homestead in northern Sweden.  With discordant family issues, a patriarch with Alzheimer's, a resentful sister and a murder mystery in their backyard, Kjeld has his plate full and lots of secrets to uncover.

The story is well-written and suitably attuned to the dark Swedish Noir atmospherics, including a cruelly harsh but beautiful landscape and, in this instance, the eerie presence of a coopful of ravens. that serve as witnesses to the main drama.  Definitely a good read and, though some of the secrets that come out were pretty evident, the motivation and identity of the murderer were a surprise to me.    

Thanks to HQ and NetGalley for providing a complimentary advance copy of the book;  this is my voluntary and honest review.
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Normally a great fan of Scandinavian crime noir novels, didn’t find this one upto the standard of ones I had read previously. A seemingly complicated but simple plot had guessed the main outcome before the half way stage. Not one of my favourite reads in this genre.
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What an amazing debut! To be honest I'm not usually into Scandinavian noir type reads!!!! But when I read this description I knew I had to have it! 
This crime thriller was so good! I was intrigued throughout the entire book! 
Great character development. The writing was good. 
So much thanks to NetGalley Publisher and Author for this copy! Very much appreciated!
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This is a brilliant read.
Wonderful well written plot and story line that had me engaged from the start.
Love the well fleshed out characters and found them believable.
Great suspense and found myself second guessing every thought I had continuously.
Can't wait to read what the author brings out next.
Recommend reading.

I was provided an ARC from NetGalley and the publisher.  This is my own honest voluntary review.
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Loved this! So good, so exciting, so gripping and great story. Can't wait to read more by this author - absolutely brilliant.
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Very good. I enjoyed this mystery story of a family and the community they live in. The characters and location were very interesting and well described, it was fast paced. I would recommend this.
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Where Ravens Roost is a family drama that unfolds at a glacial pace. I found myself getting distracted by everything but the words on the page. Kjeld is a grump at the best of times, and it is off-putting when he first comes home to see his father who has Alzheimer's. How Kjeld treats Stenar at first is cringeworthy. Eventually, Karin Nordin gives more detail into Kjeld's character and he becomes less of a surely individual. The reason why his partner, Esme sticks around is anyone's guess. To put it honestly, the murder that brings Kjeld home isn't all that interesting. I would rather had the book been about the previous case that Kjeld worked on.
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Scandinavian noir has only been a mass phenomenon as a genre for about thirty years. A small handful of exceptionally good writers found world recognition. Karin Nordin's debut novel is Scandinavian noir at its very best.
This is a hauntingly beautiful book. The remote house on the edge of the Varsund Forest provided a perfect setting for an intense and emotionally challenging plot. I love books with just a small cast of characters and each character here is drawn with scalpel-sharp precision. This is a masterclass in crime thriller writing with twists, turns, tension and terror.
I eagerly await the next Kjeld Nygaard thriller.
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My goodness I don’t usually read crime/thriller books but I really enjoyed this.

We have Kjeld who is a DI but is suspended from his job due to a case he was involved with.  He receives a phone call from his Father which makes him decide to come and see his Father who is suffering from Alzheimer’s.  

Kjeld and his Father have never really got on since he got older and they had a falling out hence why he never saw his Father.  

This story keeps you guessing and is quite complex with all the mysteries.

I certainly would read more of this author.
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A debut novel by Karin Nordin, and another tortured, difficult Scandinavian detective( cue Harry Hole!), currently suspended from his job in Gothenburg. Kjelt Nygaard has received a message from his father, who suffers from dementia, to say that he has seen a murder in his barn, which houses a flock of ravens.  Kjelt hates the ravens, but finds a human tooth in the feathered hell hole, and so begins an unravelling and an eventual revelation.

Kjelt seems to have fractured relationships with his family and  anyone else who comes into contact with him. His sister is resentful and miserable; the landscape is bleak and remote. His colleague is the only character who seems to be touched by sunshine. He has a partner, but that relationship is also rocky. All this aside, he's not dislikeable, and neither is this novel. The story line is interesting and gallops along, familial and locational misery notwithstanding. 
It reaches an interesting conclusion, and I'm sure this is not the last we will hear of the prickly Kjelt....
With thanks to Net Galley and the publisher for my pre published copy in return for an honest review.
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In this book we meet Detective Inspector Kjeld Nygaard as he makes his way back to his hometown following his suspension from the Gothenburg police. He hasn’t been back, let alone spoken to his family still there, for years but is led back following a cryptic message from his father about having witnessed a murder in the barn in which he keeps his ravens. We soon learn that his father has Alzheimer’s and that his account of any crime taking place has been dismissed by the local police. It is therefore up to Kjeld to find out what is causing his father’s unease while at the same time tackling his own demons, past and present.

This was a really good Scandi-noir crime drama! The story itself was well told and the action was paced nicely throughout. More gripping than the crime, though, was the story of Kjeld himself and his relationships with his family prior to leaving his hometown as well as his family and friends back in Gothenburg, which I hope will be further explored in future titles. The “twists” in the tale were easily spotted, but this didn’t hamper my enjoyment of the story which was dark and winding but also very emotive in a lot of places. I look forward to meeting Kjeld again in future instalments of this series.

My thanks to the author, NetGalley, and the publisher for the arc to review.
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This is a good Nordic Noir debut novel and start of a series. The atmosphere was described well and I could feel the cold and picture the snow and short, dark days. The addition of the ravens made it creepy too - I certainly wouldn’t have gone anywhere near them! I found it interesting to start a series around the detective’s family and the house he grew up in and also involving his work partner too, but at least everything is out in the open for the next books and I look forward to seeing how the characters grow. Maybe some of it was a little predictable but when you’ve read loads of books it’s difficult not to be. I will certainly be looking out for the next in this series. Thank you to NetGalley and HQ Digital for letting me read and review this book. 3.5 ⭐️
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Detective Kjeld Nygaard is suspended from his job and avoiding giving a statement to his superiors about his previous case when he gets a garbled message from his father asking for help.  When Kjeld gets to his childhood friend he finds his father is suffering from dementia and his sister Sara is struggling to take care of him and her family.  His father says someone had been killed in the barn where he keeps his ravens but the police don’t find anything.  Then an intruder is spotted in the barn who Kjeld chases but fails to catch.  On his return he and his family discover a skeleton in the barn - his father was telling the truth after all.  Kjeld decides to carry out his own investigation which leads to the discovery of family secrets, secret contracts and secret business deals. 

Really enjoyed this book, a really interesting story.  

Thanks to Netgalley, HQ Digital and Karin Nordin for the ARC of this book in return for an honest review.
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This is my very first time reading a Scandi Noir book and it did intrigue me. I liked how, yes, there was a mystery and there was a murder and a body and shady things happening, but at the story's core, it was a family drama. I'm not sure if that is typical of the genre or not, but I thought it added an interesting element that I'm not used to seeing in other mysteries I've read. 

Kjeld Nygaard is a suspended cop who gets a strange phone call from his father. They have been estranged since Kjeld left the house and now his father has Alzheimer's and his memory isn't reliable. He claims to have seen someone murdered in the barn out back on his property. Kjeld rushes up to see if he can figure out what is going on and gets a lot more than he bargained for. 

I anticipated one twist, but the others were not as easy to predict. It's atmospheric, taking place in northern Sweden in a small, insular town that acts almost as if it is a character in its own right. The stories with settings that act as characters are some of my favorites and whether or not it was purposeful, I loved to see that utilized here. Overall, a compelling read and an interesting blend of crime and family drama.
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I have to admit it was my partner who encouraged me to read this book. He loves a Scandinavian book and wanted to know how this one was, so I volunteered to read and review before him. Thank you to @HQstories and @KNordinAuthor for this advanced copy of Where Ravens Roost in return for an honest review. Where Ravens Roost is out now and you can get a copy here.

Description 🔖

Detective Kjeld Nygaard grew up in the small town of Varsund and as soon he was able, he was quick to leave. He chose a career in the city over his family and over the years lost touch with his father and sister. Until his father, Stenar calls him and leaves a message saying that there has been a murder in his raven barn.

There is little to no evidence and the local police aren’t interested in investigating further. Stenar’s Alzheimers diagnosis has everyone but Kjeld believing that this is a confused delusion. Kjeld can’t resist investigating and soon finds a body in the barn. The local police turn their focus onto Stenar and therefore it is up to Kjeld to prove that his father had nothing to do with the crime.

General Thoughts 🤔

Mysteries and thrillers are probably the books that I enjoy most so I did enjoy this book. It had secrets and different paths of investigation and I liked that. There were a few action chapters that gave me a drama fix and therefore overall the book was made up of all the things that I look for.

There was something I thought was missing but I can’t quite put my finger on what. The mystery wasn’t quite complex enough maybe? It’s not that the book was predictable but I kind of just felt a little bit of disappointment at the end. A bit like oh, ok, that’s what happened. There wasn’t a big gasp moment for me.

Characters 👫👭👬

Kjeld was very much the main character in the book. I found him to be exactly as you would expect; complicated, moody, dark and fighting demons. I liked him and had some empathy for him at the end. I did feel a little bit like I wanted to know more about him. There are mentions about his past in the book and I spent a while wondering if this was actually a second book in a series. Some pretty big events were mentioned but not much information given. They didn’t add much to the story which is what I think caused my confusion.

Kjeld’s sister Sara is the other character I’d like to mention. I felt sorry for this character for almost the entire book. However the book reveals a lot about her at the end and once I’d read that, I couldn’t match the two Saras together. It was like reading about two different people for me. Maybe I missed some hints about her earlier in the story.

Writing Style ✍️

As I alluded to, I spent the first quarter or so of this book thinking I’d jumped into a series mid-way through. I couldn’t work out why the history about Kjeld was included in the story as I couldn’t make the link between the past and the present. I think there should have been more correlation between the past and present, or the past should have been left out altogether.

What I did like was that when there were chapters full of action, I as a reader was thrown right into them with no warning. I liked that there wasn’t a build up for these scenes as it caught me off guard and kept me alert.

Conclusion & Scoring 🎖️

Overall, I found this to be an enjoyable read but not a book that I will be likely to remember for all time. I will hold my hands up and admit that I read this book in chunks rather than all in one go, so that may have something to do with me feeling like I wasn’t 100% drawn in to the storyline. If you’re looking for an easy read but would still like a thriller fix, then I would recommend this.
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I have come to love the Scandi crime stories over the last few years and this one certainly doesn’t disappoint.

DI Kjeld Nygaard is suspended from his job over an incident in his previous case. But then he receives a cryptic message from his father about a murder in his barn. But as his father has Alzheimer’s is this a delusion, or is it something that has actually happened. Kjeld drives to his fathers isolated property to investigate. There is only one major employer near where his father lives a Normalm Industries they are trying to merge with another company Minecorp, the rest of the area is remote forest area.

The prologue opening with Stenar, Nygaard’s father being awakened by the Ravens gave me the creeps, the description of the birds Caws getting louder as he approached the barn, then the voices, this had me hooked. It is twelve years since father and son had seen each other.

There is a lot of tension between Nygaard and his sister as she tells him his father is in the last stages of Alzheimer’s she is angry and bitter to her brother as she has had to deal with the father. It doesn’t help that the local police don’t believe Nygaard when he tells them what his father has seen and heard, mainly due to his health how do they know if it was real or not. So it’s up to Nygaard to look into things himself as he looks around the old barn and rookery he finds a human tooth in a ravens nest. He begins to be convinced his father was telling the truth and it’s not long before human remains are found and things start to become a little more dangerous for Nygaard

This is a brilliantly written engrossing debut novel, drawing you in, with perfect plot twists that make you want to keep reading, it’s a very dark read, set in a deep woodland area, which adds a claustrophobic atmosphere. The plot flows with Nygaard being a great character despite his flaws, his troubled family and work relationships Along with maybe a few skeletons hidden in his closet. It will be interesting to see where he goes next and how the character grows. Getting to know more about him.

Definitely one for scandi noir lovers, I highly recommend this. I would like to thank #netgalley and HQ Digital for an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest fair and unbiased review.
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