Updated: Jan 20
In Where Blood Runs Cold, Giles Kristian gives us a visceral, heart wrenching, thrill ride through a snow swept wilderness.
It is a story of love and loss, of sorrow and regret. But it is also one of love, of family, of hope and determination. A father who has already lost one daughter, simply refuses to lose another, no matter what life throws at them.
Erik promises to take his daughter on the ‘Long Ski’, through the wilderness of northern Norway. On the first night Sofia cuts her hand, and it is deep enough for Erik to change course, and they diverge to a nearby house, where Erik hopes they will find some assistance. But tragedy awaits, and Erik and Sofia are forced to hide in an upstairs bedroom whilst two people are murdered just below them.
What comes next is a ski trip neither son or daughter will forget. On and on they are forced to ski, to the edge of their endurance, seemingly to the edge of the world. For there is no help to be found in the dark corners of the north, where the elements are king and mere people must survive any way they can. With every painful stride of their tiring legs they are aware of the people chasing them, the people that have killed once, and won’t hesitate to do so again.
What really struck me with this story was the bond between father and daughter. A family torn apart from loss, thrust back together in tragedy. Erik is a powerful protagonist, and his need to keep his one remaining daughter safe drives the story on, his emotions pouring from the page.
They struggle through a wilderness that is brilliantly brought to life, you can feel their pain, their exhaustion, as they battle to the ends of their tether to stay one step ahead of their pursuers. The father and daughter make a believable team, and I would gladly read on about their journeys together.