The Girl Who Died: Book summary and reviews of The Girl Who Died by Ragnar Jonasson

The Girl Who Died

by Ragnar Jonasson

The Girl Who Died by Ragnar Jonasson X
The Girl Who Died by Ragnar Jonasson
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  • Published in USA  May 2021
    320 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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Book Summary

From Ragnar Jónasson, the award-winning author of the international bestselling Ari Thór series, The Girl Who Died is a standalone thriller about a young woman seeking a new start in a secluded village where a small community is desperate to protect its secrets.

Teacher Wanted At the Edge of the World

Una wants nothing more than to teach, but she has been unable to secure steady employment in Reykjavík. Her savings are depleted, her love life is nonexistent, and she cannot face another winter staring at the four walls of her shabby apartment. Celebrating Christmas and ringing in 1986 in the remote fishing hamlet of Skálar seems like a small price to pay for a chance to earn some teaching credentials and get her life back on track.

But Skálar isn't just one of Iceland's most isolated villages, it is home to just ten people. Una's only students are two girls aged seven and nine. Teaching them only occupies so many hours in a day and the few adults she interacts with are civil but distant. She only seems to connect with Thór, a man she shares an attraction with but who is determined to keep her at arm's length.

As darkness descends throughout the bleak winter, Una finds herself more often than not in her rented attic space―the site of a local legendary haunting―drinking her loneliness away. She is plagued by nightmares of a little girl in a white dress singing a lullaby. And when a sudden tragedy echoes an event long buried in Skálar's past, the villagers become even more guarded, leaving a suspicious Una seeking to uncover a shocking truth that's been kept secret for generations.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"An atmospheric, authentically shivery ghost story with criminal trimmings." - Kirkus Reviews

"Jónasson makes Una's plight feel vivid and immediate, and effectively uses the isolated setting to create a claustrophobic atmosphere. While this packs less of a punch than the author's best work, it's far superior to most similarly themed thrillers." - Publishers Weekly

"[Chilling] and atmospheric. Jonasson's writing makes you feel claustrophobic, like you are really trapped at the end of the world...If you are looking for a dark and chilling Nordic Noir, look no further than The Girl Who Died." - Mystery & Suspense

This information about The Girl Who Died shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Ragnar Jonasson Author Biography

Photo: Bill Waters

Ragnar Jonasson was born in Iceland and works as an Attorney at Law and writer in Reykjavik. Before embarking on a writing career, Ragnar translated fourteen Agatha Christie novels into Icelandic. Ragnar is the co-founder of the Reykjavik international crime writing festival Iceland Noir. He has appeared on panels at various crime fiction festivals, including Bouchercon and Left Coast Crime in the US. Ragnar lives in Reykjavik with his wife and two daughters.

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