A saga set in Iceland
- Bewertet: Format: eBook (ePUB)
Speaking of enticing covers… again, this book draws attention with its beautiful and mesmerizing cover design. Another reason for picking this one is a fascination with Nordic myths and landscapes. Although the author is from New Jersey, she has done a brilliant job conjuring up a rich, authentic atmosphere of 17th century Ice... Speaking of enticing covers… again, this book draws attention with its beautiful and mesmerizing cover design. Another reason for picking this one is a fascination with Nordic myths and landscapes. Although the author is from New Jersey, she has done a brilliant job conjuring up a rich, authentic atmosphere of 17th century Iceland. Rough, cold, and snowy, it reminded me a little of the 1987 movie “Ofelas” (Pathfinder), although the movie is about a war between Norwegian tribes and ultimately revenge. But Lea has invented a saga in its own right, albeit on a smaller scale, concerning but a small group of people. It is basically set in two Icelandic villages, one of them right by the sea. After the loss of her father, Rósa has no choice but to agree and marry a widower whose first wife has not long passed. It is a matter of sheer survival. Missing her old life, her mother, her old home, her childhood love and her hunger for knowledge, she is torn, struggling to be a dutiful and pious wife to a strangely distant husband. She feels exposed to all sorts of forces in a lonely and increasingly uncanny new place. Almost nothing is like it seems in this story, for “the truth isn’t solid, like the earth; she knows that now. The truth is water, or steam; the truth is ice. The same tale might shift and melt and reshape at any time.” You will probably not want to put this tale down until you're done reading it. There are some surprising similarities to “The Binding” by Bridget Collins. I would highly recommend Kristín Marja Baldursdóttir’s “Karitas” (German: “Die Eismalerin”), set about 250 years later, also about an Icelandic woman who must find her calling.
The Glass Woman
Shortlisted for the Historical Writers Association Debut Crown Award
In the tradition of Jane Eyre and Rebecca—The Glass Woman by Caroline Lea in which a young woman follows her new husband to his remote home on the Icelandic coast in the 1680s, where she faces dark secrets surrounding the death of his first wife amidst a foreboding landscape and the superstitions of the local villagers.
“Gripped me in a cold fist. Beautiful.” —Sara Collins, author of The Confessions of Frannie Langton
“An Icelandic Jane Eyre.” —Sunday Times, London
Rósa has always dreamed of living a simple life alongside her Mamma in their remote village in Iceland, where she prays to the Christian God aloud during the day, whispering enchantments to the old gods alone at night. But after her father dies abruptly and her Mamma becomes ill, Rósa marries herself off to a visiting trader in exchange for a dowry, despite rumors of mysterious circumstances surrounding his first wife’s death.
Rósa follows her new husband, Jón, across the treacherous countryside to his remote home near the sea. There Jón works the field during the day, expecting Rósa to maintain their house in his absence with the deference of a good Christian wife. What Rósa did not anticipate was the fierce loneliness she would feel in her new home, where Jón forbids her from interacting with the locals in the nearby settlement and barely speaks to her himself.
Seclusion from the outside world isn’t the only troubling aspect of her new life—Rósa is also forbidden from going into Jón’s attic. When Rósa begins to hear strange noises from upstairs, she turns to the local woman in an attempt to find solace. But the villager’s words are even more troubling—confirming many of the rumors about Jón’s first wife, Anna, including that he buried her body alone in the middle of the night.
Rósa’s isolation begins to play tricks on her mind: What—or who—is in the attic? What happened to Anna? Was she mad, a witch, or just a victim of Jón’s ruthless nature? And when Jón is brutally maimed in an accident a series of events are set in motion that will force Rósa to choose between obedience and defiance—with her own survival and the safety of the ones she loves hanging in the balance.
Caroline Lea was born and raised in Jersey in the United Kingdom. The Glass Woman is her second novel. She lives in Warwick, England.