The gripping second novel in M. J. McGrath's Arctic crime series, now in a stunning new look
M. J. McGrath was born in Essex. As Melanie McGrath she is the author of critically acclaimed, bestselling non-fiction (Silvertown and The Long Exile) and won the John Llewelyn-Rhys/Mail on Sunday award for Best New British and Commonwealth Writer under 35, for her first book Motel Nirvana. She writes for the national press and is a regular broadcaster on radio. Her first novel White Heat was longlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger Award. Melanie lives and works in London.
`The seasonally appropriate The Boy in the Snow is not a book by the latest Nordic writing sensation. M. J. McGrath is English, with a terrific gift for the atmospheric portrayal of cold, ice and snow - and of the people who live in those climes. Her sleuth heroine, the Arctic guide Edie Kiglatuk, who is half Inuit, stumbles across a child's frozen body. She doesn't believe the police view that a Russian sect is to blame. Against the backdrop of her former husband's participation in Alaska's famous Iditarod dog-sled race, her stubborn inquiries lead her into dangerous political territory. Kiglatuk is beguilingly different and the setting awesome' The Best Crime/Thriller Books of 2012 feature, Marcel Berlins, The Times `M. J. McGrath is a home grown ice crystal, an Essex girl whose crime fiction is chillier than any Scandi's. So this is a welcome return for Inuit sleuth Edie Kiglatuk . . . This book is far more than a tale of exploitation: it reaches into the still-surviving beliefs and customs of remote peoples and explores their relationship to the encroaching modern world . . . McGrath's writing is richly saturated in Inuit language and legend: a deeply satisfying and imaginative read' Independent 'The exotic setting of the Canadian High Arctic gave [M. J. McGrath's] debut, White Heat, a distinctive flavour. Richly realised, it's a gripping story that hinges on the collision of two very different ways of life, and features an Inuit hunter/guide as protagonist' Val McDermid, on her favourite new crime writers `Outstanding . . . McGrath has a firm grasp on a little known culture, its values and language, and excels at bringing to life such characters as conniving Anchorage mayor Chuck Hillingberg and his power-hungry wife, Marsha. This affecting novel should melt even the most frozen human hearts' Starred Publishers Weekly review `The Boy In The Snow is a thrilling chiller . . . Wrap up warmly. M. J. McGrath's earlier Arctic-set outing White Heat may have borrowed its title from an old James Cagney film but was in every other respect a totally original piece of work, demonstrating for a first novel an authoritative grasp of the thriller idiom. That book made people sit up and take notice but inevitably raised expectations for its successor. Has McGrath managed to match her achievement with The Boy In The Snow, the second book to feature her female Inuit hunter turned sleuth Edie Kiglatuk? . . . As anybody who has read McGrath's earlier book will know she is an author with a quietly impressive command of character. Edie is a heroine with whom it is extremely easy to identify, however alien her lifestyle will be to most of us. Yet the author's real skill is in the astonishing evocation of the frigid landscape, along with the sharply conjured details of Inuit life. What's more, McGrath is able to keep all these elements satisfyingly balanced, even as the tormented past of Edie begins to invade the present. The burying of secrets in both the physical and metaphorical sense in a snowbound landscape is hardly a new idea but McGrath makes us feel we are encountering it for the first time. This is turning into a series that readers will want to follow with close attention' Barry Forshaw, Daily Express 'Acknowledged as one of our most gifted younger writers, McGrath's first thriller - featuring Arctic guide Edie Kiglatuk - was the exceptional White Heat, published last year to deserved acclaim. This second confirms just how good this Essex-born writer with a taste for Alaska really is . . . The snow-laden wastes of Alaska are so brilliantly evoked that it almost make you shiver reading it, and the plot is every bit as chilling, laced as it is with politics, sects and modern greed' Daily Mail `Half-Inuit Edie, who debuted in White Heat, here finds herself at mortal risk from the cold, so masterfully described that it chills the reader. McGrath adds an element of Inuit spirituality to this fast-moving mystery of corruption and cover-ups, meeting expectations established by the compelling series opener' Booklist