Mesmerized, hypnotized – and utterly unnerved: The Darkest Room, by Johan Theorin

August 19, 2010 at 2:18 am (Book review, books, Mystery fiction)

I have started several blog posts recently but not been able to finish them. I’m having some difficulty writing. Actually I’m having some difficulty breathing. And it is all because of this book:

My heart has been broken. I’m filled with dread. But I can’t stop reading.

The Darkest Room won the 2010 International Dagger from the Crime Writers’ Association of Great Britain. Recently, in commenting on one of the posts on this blog , the writer Ann Cleeves stated that “…my favourite Scandinavian writer at the moment is Johan Theorin.”  I now know why.

I’m almost half way through. The tension is building; the prospect is bleak – and it is so very cold on the island of Oland…


  1. kathy d. said,

    I just started “The Darkest Room,” and after seeing your post about your reaction halfway through it, I’m terrified of reading it.

    I love Arnaldur Indridason’s books and wanted “Hypothermia,” to win the Dagger.

    However, I wonder if I’ll change my mind after reading Theorin’s book. I don’t know.

    But the pressure mounts.

  2. kathy d. said,

    I just finished “The Darkest Room.” While it’s good and well-written–and eerie–I still am torn about the Dagger, whether Theorin or Indridason should have won. I like Indridason’s writing style and characters more. I did not like the ghost story history on Oland, however the contemporary story was fine, on its own merit. So, either could have won the Dagger. I’m waiting for Indridason’s next book to be translated. EuroCrime does have an entry that it will be out next year in English.

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