The Courier

The Courier

3.64 (544 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Translated by 

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Description

The international bestselling godfather of Nordic Noir takes on one of the most horrific periods of modern history, in a stunning standalone thriller ... NUMBER ONE BESTSELLER

'The Courier is a stylish stand-alone thriller from the godfather of Scandi noir ... Ola Dahl ratchets up the tension from the first pages and never lets go' The Times

'Cleverly braiding together past and present, the who and why of murder and betrayal are unpicked. The detail is impressive' Daily Mail

In 1942, Jewish courier Ester is betrayed, narrowly avoiding arrest by the Gestapo. In a great haste, she escapes to Sweden, saving herself. Her family in Oslo, however, is deported to Auschwitz. In Stockholm, Ester meets the resistance hero, Gerhard Falkum, who has left his little daughter and fled both the Germans and allegations that he murdered his wife, Ase, who helped Ester get to Sweden. Their burgeoning relationship ends abruptly when Falkum dies in a fire.

And yet, twenty-five years later, Falkum shows up in Oslo. He wants to reconnect with his daughter. But where has he been, and what is the real reason for his return? Ester stumbles across information that forces her to look closely at her past, and to revisit her war-time training to stay alive...

Written with Dahl's trademark characterization and elegant plotting, The Courier sees the hugely respected godfather of Nordic Noir at his best, as he takes on one of the most horrific periods of modern history, in an exceptional, shocking thriller.

'Absorbing, heart-rending and perfectly plotted. Kjell Ola Dahl's The Courier passes seamlessly from the present to the dark past of WWII. Fabulous!' Denzil Meyrick

'Skilfully juggling three Oslo timelines - in 1942, 1967 and 2015 - Dahl starts his story with Germany's occupation of Norway and the work of those who tried to resist, then brings his characters forward to a post-war unravelling of what really happened in those dangerous days - and the traumatic rewriting of personal stories' The Times Crime Club

'The Courier is very good on the socio-political situation of the time, the relationship between Norway and neutral neighbour Sweden. This is a gritty but ultimately uplifting story. Superbly translated by Don Bartlett' NB Magazine

'A fascinating, intricate, provocative read, set in motion by events in 1942, and brilliantly highlighting human need and emotions ... told and translated so beautifully, each moment opens into the other as a series of doors that you just need to open and walk through. 'The Courier' sent a shiver coursing through me, it is a truly eloquent and rewarding tale, and oh that ending!' LoveReading

'Written with Dahl's trademark characterisation and clever plotting, The Courier sees one of Norway's most critically acclaimed authors at his best ... This stunning and compelling wartime thriller is reminiscent of the writing of John Le Carre and William Boyd' New Books Magazine

'Utterly convincing' Publishers Weekly

'Kjell Ola Dahl's novels are superb. If you haven't read one, you need to - right now' William Ryan

'More than gripping' European Literature Network

'The perfect example of why Nordic Noir has become such a popular genre' Reader's Digest

'It all comes together, of course, in the kind of masterful, detailed plotting that Dahl is known for. The events are shocking, but familiar given the number of novels set in and around World War II, but the power of The Courier is how Dahl has given a complex, human face to such an inhuman tragedy' Crime Fiction Lover

'Atmospheric thriller with lots of great twists and loved the scandi wartime story in particular. Gripping will be recommending to readers' Edgy Books
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Product details

  • Paperback | 276 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 25.4mm | 299.37g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1912374439
  • 9781912374434
  • 409,118

Review quote

"More than gripping." --European Literature Network "The perfect example of why Nordic Noir has become such a popular genre." --Reader's Digest "Superb . . . The translator's stripped-down, muscular prose is a plus." --Publishers Weekly starred review of Faithless "Kjell Ola Dahl's novels are superb. If you haven't read one, you need to--right now." --William Ryan, author, Holy Thief "If you have never sampled Dahl, now is the time to try." --Daily Mail "Excellent . . . Fans of Scandinavian noir will be eager for Dahl's next book." --Publishers Weekly starred review of The Ice Swimmer "A chilling novel about betrayal." --Sunday Times "Skilfully juggling three Oslo timelines -- in 1942, 1967 and 2015 -- Dahl starts his story with Germany's occupation of Norway and the work of those who tried to resist, then brings his characters forward to a post-war unravelling of what really happened in those dangerous days -- and the traumatic rewriting of personal stories." --Times Crime Club 'The Courier is a stylish stand-alone thriller from the godfather of Scandi noir ... Ola Dahl ratchets up the tension from the first pages and never lets go." --Times "A dark but richly described backdrop and a relentless, underlying tension drive this sad story to its bittersweet conclusion." --Publishers Weekly "Dahl excels at creating tense situations without violence or even dialogue...Fans of Scandinavian mysteries will enjoy this historical look at WWII Oslo." -- Historical Novels Review
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About Kjell Ola Dahl

One of the fathers of the Nordic Noir genre, Kjell Ola Dahl was born in 1958 in Gjovik. He made his debut in 1993, and has since published eleven novels, the most prominent of which is a series of police procedurals cum psychological thrillers featuring investigators Gunnarstranda and Frolich. In 2000 he won the Riverton Prize for The Last Fix and he won both the prestigious Brage and Riverton Prizes for The Courier in 2015. His work has been published in fourteen countries, and he lives in Oslo.
Follow Kjell Ola on Twitter @ko_dahl Don Bartlett completed an MA in Literary Translation at the University of East Anglia in 2000 and has since worked with a wide variety of Danish and Norwegian authors, including Jo Nesbo and Gunnar Staalesen's Varg Veum series: We Shall Inherit the Wind, Wolves in the Dark and the Petrona award-winning Where Roses Never Die. He also translated Faithless, the previous book in Kjell Ola Dahl's Oslo Detective series for Orenda Books. He lives with his family in a village in Norfolk
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Rating details

544 ratings
3.64 out of 5 stars
5 16% (86)
4 44% (241)
3 30% (165)
2 8% (42)
1 2% (10)
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