4.35 (142 ratings by Goodreads)
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Would you murder your brothers to keep them from telling the truth about themselves?

On a long, cold Icelandic night in March 1920, Gunnar, a hermit blacksmith, finds himself with an unwanted lodger - Sigurd, an injured stranger who offers a story from the past. But some stories, even those of an old man who can barely walk, are too dangerous to hear. They alter the listeners' lives forever... by ending them.

Others are keen on changing Gunnar's life as well. Depending on who gets to tell his story, it might lead towards an unwanted marriage, an intervention, rejoining the Church, letting the elf drive him insane, or succumbing to the demons in his mind. Will he manage to write his own last chapter?

Bjørn Larssen's award-winning novel is an otherworldly, emotive Icelandic saga - a story of love and loneliness, relief and suffering, hatred... and hope.

"Addictive to the extreme. I cannot praise this book enough." - Mary Anne Yarde, Coffee Pot Book Club

"...the 'then' is just as captivating as the 'now' story. We know that the 'then' story is setting out little clues, but it's hard to know what they are." - #DDRevs Historical Fiction Reviews

Discovering Diamonds' Discovered Diamond Winner, shortlisted for Book of the Month
Coffee Pot Book Club Award Winner
Coffee Pot Book Club Historical Fiction (Modern) Book of the Year - Honourable Mention
Readers' Choice Best Cover Award Winner
Readers' Favourite Five-Stars Pick

Note: British English conventions, spelling, and grammar were used in this book.

The author is an ex-blacksmith, lover of all things Icelandic, physically located in Amsterdam, spiritually living in a log cabin near Akureyri. He has published stories and essays in Polish and American magazines, both online and in print. This is his first novel.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 292 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 21mm | 599g
  • English
  • 9082998505
  • 9789082998504
  • 2,483,662

Review quote

"I loved this book - it was a delight to read, an unusual debut novel by a writer with much talent. [...] This a work of literary art that I recommend most highly; Bjørn Larssen is, indeed, an Icelandic storyteller." - Terry Tyler, author of Blackthorn and Tipping Point

"The historical detailing in this book has to be commended. This era has been painstakingly researched, and it shines through in Larssen's writing. The realism in this story is almost tangible. I cannot praise this book enough. I loved every syllable, every word, every sentence. Storytellers is a real treat." - Mary Anne Yarde, Coffee Pot Book Club

"The drama is intense, the plot reveals come thick and fast, and the ending is satisfying and yet... it might not be an ending. I think it is for the reader to decide what really happens. [...] This story was an ambitious project and the author has executed it with aplomb. It's not like anything I've ever read before and these strange, sad, funny, murderous people will stay with me for a long time." - Annie Whitehead, Discovering Diamonds

"A truly remarkable debut - wonderful storytelling [...] I felt throughout that I was in a safe pair of hands and just sat back and enjoyed the story, happy to let the author take me wherever he wanted to go. Highly recommended." - Debbie Young, author of Springtime For Murder

"Yes, I got a little bit of mystery with a little bit of magic, followed by INSANE, jaw-dropping revelations. But at its heart, Storytellers is a tale of evading the darkness, bearing with the pain of tragedy, and living to see the sun rise another day." - Justine Bergman, Whispers and Wonder

"There is something magical and enchanting about Storytellers that makes it an unputdownable book, even though there isn't a single happy person in it. Bjørn Larssen is undoubtedly among the best storytellers I've encountered. He grabs you by your gut and keeps wrenching it until the very end." - RockStarLit Book Asylum

"The book was reminiscent of Kazuo Ishiguro's The Buried Giant, in both theme and mood. [...] It isn't always the easiest read, but it's not a book I'm going to forget easily, either." - Marian L. Thorpe, author of Empire's Daughter and Oraiáphon
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Rating details

142 ratings
4.35 out of 5 stars
5 51% (72)
4 37% (53)
3 10% (14)
2 1% (1)
1 1% (2)
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