Thursday 12 October 2023

Stigma by Thomas Enger & Jørn Lier Horst BLOG TOUR #Stigma @EngerThomas @LierHorst t. @meganeturney @OrendaBooks #BookExtract


Incarcerated in a Norwegian high-security prison, a broken Alexander Blix joins forces with Emma Ramm to find a ruthless killer who has escaped from a German jail. Pulse-pounding Nordic Noir.

Alexander Blix is a broken man. Convicted for avenging his daughter’s death, he is now being held in one of Norway’s high-security prisons. Inside, the other prisoners take every opportunity to challenge and humiliate the former police investigator. On the outside, Blix’s former colleagues have begun the hunt for a terrifying killer. Walter Kroos has escaped from prison in Germany and is making his way north. The only lead established by the police is that Kroos has a friend in Blix’s prison ward. And now they need Blix’s help.

Journalist Emma Ramm is one of Blix’s few visitors, and she becomes his ally as he struggles to connect the link between past and present, between the world inside and outside the prison walls. And as he begins to piece things together, he identifies a woodland community in Norway where deeply scarred inhabitants foster deadly secrets... secrets that maybe the unravelling of everyone involved.

Stigma by Thomas Enger and Jørn Lier Horst is published by Orenda Books on 12 October 2023 and is the fourth in the Blix and Ramm series. It is translated by Megan E Turney.

As part of this Blog Tour, I am delighted to share an extract from the book with you today. 

Extract from Stigma by Thomas Enger & Jørn Lier Horst 

The late-afternoon sun soaked the tired apartment buildings in a bright light, which also bore down on the people waiting for the city-centre tram at Holbergs Plass. On the rare occasions they looked up from their mobile phones, they had to shield their eyes and squint around at their surroundings.
Emma Ramm jogged on the spot, wondering whether her lungs and legs would do as they were told today. Yesterday, she almost made it all the way up to Blindern, but unlike today, she hadn’t eaten before that run, nor had she been to the prison beforehand.

Blix had become even thinner. Paler. Had lost some hair too. When she asked about his life behind bars, what it was like to be a former police officer among that many criminals, he had answered evasively. The only thing she had managed to get out of him was something about someone called Jarl Inge Ree, who’d been paying him a little ‘extra attention’. She knew him well enough now to realise that he internalised the concerns he didn’t want to share, or, at least, he kept to himself anything he thought she couldn’t help him with.

Regardless, the visits always had an effect on her. The sight of his tor- tured expression, the heavy silence. She could only imagine what it was like for Blix, having to carry the loss of his own daughter in addition to the prison sentence for taking the life of the man who killed her.
Emma felt her chest tighten.

She was not without blame for what had happened, even if Blix insisted otherwise. Emma felt like she owed him … well, what, exactly? She just wished there was something she could do to make his life better. A little easier.

Emma pulled one of her earbuds out for a moment. Amid the noise of the passing cars, she had heard, and felt through her feet, the approach- ing rumble of the light-blue tram now gliding up from the city centre.

She put her earbud back in, pulled the zipper of her running jacket up her neck a little further, and took a few deep breaths. She adjusted her leggings slightly and checked that her phone was secure on her upper arm. The tram stopped. People got off, others got on.
Emma pressed play.

All Shall Fall. Immortal’s best album – ever so slightly better than Sons of Northern Darkness. If she was going to work out, there was nothing better to do it to than Norwegian black metal. The tram slid away as the intro to the title track ended. The pale-blue colossus grad- ually picked up speed.
As did Emma.

She jogged right behind it, in the middle of the track, matching its speed until, eventually, it was too fast, and she watched it gradually put metres and metres between them. She knew she didn’t have to push too hard at this point, however, as it wasn’t that far up to Dalsbergstien, where the tram would stop for at least twenty seconds – enough time for her to catch up with it again.

She thought about Jarl Inge Ree. Who was he, exactly?
The passengers poured out. Emma jogged on the spot until the doors eased shut and the tram continued onward. She concentrated on keeping her forefoot running form, landing on the ball of each foot and maintaining minimal contact with the ground. The tram ended up trundling behind a few cars this time, so it was easy to keep up. It drifted calmly across the roundabout outside Bislett Stadium.

Information was power, she thought. Maybe she could find out more about Ree? Something Blix could take advantage of ?

Jørn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger are both internationally bestselling Norwegian authors. 

Jørn Lier Horst first rose to literary fame with his no. 1 bestselling William Wisting series. 
A former investigator in the Norwegian police, Horst imbues all his works with an unparalleled realism and suspense. 

Thomas Enger is the journalist-turned-author behind the internationally acclaimed Henning Juul series. Enger’s trademark is his dark, gritty voice paired with key social messages and tight plotting. Besides writing fiction for both adults and young adults, Enger also works as a music composer. 

Death Deserved, the first book in the bestselling Blix and Ramm series, was Jørn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger’s first co-written thriller and was followed by Smoke Screen and Unhinged.

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