So, as you can see above today is my stop on the tour for the third instalment in the Roy and Castells series by Johana Gustawsson. First I would just like to thank Anne for inviting me to take part.
Let’s jump right in…
Spain, 1938: The country is wracked by civil war, and as Valencia falls to Franco’s brutal dictatorship, Republican Therese witnesses the murders of her family. Captured and sent to the notorious Las Ventas women’s prison, Therese gives birth to a daughter who is forcibly taken from her. Falkenberg, Sweden, 2016: A wealthy family is found savagely murdered in their luxurious home. Discovering that her parents have been slaughtered, Aliénor Lindbergh, a new recruit to the UK’s Scotland Yard, rushes back to Sweden and finds her hometown rocked by the massacre. Profiler Emily Roy joins forces with Aliénor and soon finds herself on the trail of a monstrous and prolific killer. Little does she realise that this killer is about to change the life of her colleague, true-crime writer Alexis Castells. Joining forces once again, Roy and Castells’ investigation takes them from the Swedish fertility clinics of the present day back to the terror of Franco’s rule, and the horrifying events that took place in Spanish orphanages under its rule. Terrifying, vivid and recounted at breakneck speed, Blood Song is not only a riveting thriller and an examination of corruption in the fertility industry, but a shocking reminder of the atrocities of Spain’s dictatorship, in the latest, stunning instalment in the award-winning Roy & Castells series.
– Goodreads –
Yes Yes Yes! Another Nordic Noir series for me to sink my teeth into! If you don’t already know, Nordic Noir is one of my absolute favourite genres, so as soon as I saw this book I just knew that I had to get involved.
So first let me just say that I didn’t realise that this was third book in a series (my bad), thankfully this reads well as a standalone without me feeling at too much of a disadvantage. After reading this though I definitely want to start from the beginning (the first is actually on my TBR and was featured in one of my Down The TBR Hole posts, thankfully I kept it on there).
I wish that I was up to date with this series as I was really invested in the characters and I know that if I’d read the first two books I would be able to understand the relationships better. I would also feel more connected to them.
This book is told through three timelines, at first I wasn’t sure why we had the 1938 narration, however, it is vital to the present day case! I do have to say that especially in this timeline there are really heartbreaking scenes of child abuse within the orphanages, it was difficult for me to read some sections, so this may be something to bear in mind if you are triggered by this topic. There are also distressing scenes of how the Republicans were treated.
This is the first book that I’ve read which focuses on Medically Assisted Reproduction (MAR) which definitely made this a unique read. It also adds another layer to the story when you find out that the author has been through IVF herself.
As for the conclusion of the case the reveals just wouldn’t stop, being honest they floored me!
This book was so addictive I need to get my hands on the first in the series asap!
Blood Song is definitely deserving of 4 and a half cups of coffee out of 5!
So who is Johana Gustawsson?
Born in Marseille, France, and with a degree in Political Science, Johana Gustawsson has worked as a journalist for the French and Spanish press and television. Her critically acclaimed Roy & Castells series has won the Plume d’Argent, Balai de la decouverte, Balai d’Or and Prix Marseillais du Polar awards, and is now published in nineteen countries. A TV adaptation is currently underway in French, Swedish and UK co-production. Johana lives in London with her Swedish husband and their three sons. She drew on her own experience of fertility clinics and IVF to write Blood Song and is happy to speak and write pieces about this.
You can connect with her on Twitter here: @JoGustawsson
-Don’t Forget To Check Out The Other Stops-
See you in the next one…