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Translated by Marlaine Delargy
On a winter trip home to the island of Domarö, Anders and Cecilia take their six-year-old daughter Maja across the ice to visit the lighthouse at Gåvasten.
And Maja disappears. Leaving not even a footprint in the snow.
Two years later, alone and more or less permanently drunk, Anders returns to Domarö to confront his despair. He slowly realises that Maja’s disappearance is not the first inexplicable tragedy to strike the islanders. Nor is everyone telling him all they know; even his own grandmother, it seems, is keeping secrets.
And what is it about the sea? There’s something very bad happening on Domarö. Something that involves the sea itself.
John Ajvide Lindqvist serves up a masterful cocktail of suspense laced with bizarre humour and a narrative that barely pauses for breath. Harbour is also a heartbreaking study of loss and guilt: a novel whose epic climax pits the infinite force of nature against the implacable love of a father for his child.
‘Lindqvist balances horror with credibly drawn feeling…and of course the setting helps enormously: they make a vivid picture, blood and snow.’
‘Can a horror thriller be truly enjoyable? Certainly in the hands of Swedish author Lindqvist…Intelligent writing, poetic imagery, a deft turn of phrase, this is no slice and dice shocker (except for the chainsaw duel).
‘A magician of genre fiction…Lindqvist again trips along that thin high wire between supernatural devices and psychological verities…between monsters outside and demons within, Lindqvist covers the haunted waterfront.’
‘Lindqvist is Sweden’s answer to Stephen King.’
‘Harbour effectively mixes the societal tensions found in Scandinavian crime with the supernatural horror of Stephen King.’
‘Suspense, humour and an enormous climax.’