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The Ice Hotel


The promised summer heatwave hasn’t arrived, but you can still cool down by reading a thriller set in an ice hotel in the frozen depths of Swedish Lapland. The author, Hania Allen, paid a visit to such a hotel a few years back and was so taken by the weirdness and transience of the structure that she was inspired to write this standalone thriller, a change from her wonderful Dania Gorska, the Polish detective, series.

Of course the joy of an ice hotel is that it is the perfect place to commit a murder – or murders – as all the incriminating evidence melts and vanishes in the spring . . . no excuse for not committing the perfect crime there! And just how do you catch a killer under those circumstances? Plus life seems so fraught there anyway; to go to the loo in the middle of the night is risky – you have to get fully dressed in special padded clothing or risk freezing to death en route! Not the most relaxing of holidays, I think.

So clearly, the ice hotel is the perfect place to stage a murder, but it all sounds terrifyingly beautiful too, and all that dazzling whiteness and silence must be so exhilarating. Indeed, the place seems so alien to our day-to-day, in parts it is like reading an SF novel. So if you want a few hours of pure escapism – or if you just want to cool off – then do pick this up and prepare to be chilled.

Krystyna Green