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Original title: Det röda arvet
Original publication: Norstedts förlag
Genre: Historical Suspense

The Basque Country, summer 1938. Three young men from the International Brigade are fleeing Franco’s Nationalist army. Near the French border in the Pyrenees they take refuge in a remote farm. What happens there over a few hours at dawn will haunt them for the rest of their lives.

Stockholm, spring 2006. Thomas Thorild, an unemployed historian, is offered a temporary assignment to go through the papers of local politician Erik Johansson at the city’s National Archive. Irish journalist Moira Byrne hires him to look for some letters from an Irish volunteer in the Spanish Civil War, which should be there in Johansson’s archive.
But she is not the only one who is looking for the missing letters. Soon, Thomas finds himself being pressurised by international media group News and Views and its owner, the ruthless and reactionary billionaire Harry Maddox. At the same time Thomas feels increasingly attracted to Moira, but he has a rude awakening when he realises that she is not who she claims to be.
But she is not the only one who is looking for the missing letters. Soon, Thomas finds himself being pressurised by international media group News and Views and its owner, the ruthless and reactionary billionaire Harry Maddox. At the same time Thomas feels increasingly attracted to Moira, but he has a rude awakening when he realises that she is not who she claims to be.
Into the shallow Grave is a thriller of civil war, love and moral responsibility. It unfolds between the peace of the archive in Stockholm, seedy housing projects in Dublin, the Norwegian Alps, and desolate mountain villages of the Basque Country.

REVIEWS

“’Into the Shallow Grave’ is a masterly story which, at the same time, provides a much-needed history lesson from the horrendous events of the Spanish Civil War up to the Second World War. It is difficult to tear oneself away from this book. It satisfies one’s hunger for suspense, as well as offering up both historical insight and a fine literary reading experience.”

NT

“’Into the Shallow Grave’ is a masterly story which, at the same time, provides a much-needed history lesson from the horrendous events of the Spanish Civil War up to the Second World War. It is difficult to tear oneself away from this book. It satisfies one’s hunger for suspense, as well as offering up both historical insight and a fine literary reading experience.”

NT

“’Into the Shallow Grave’ is his first book in the crime genre, and the result is an exciting, fact-packed story, which offers, at the same time, a close-up depiction of the lives of the many volunteers of the Spanish Civil War, and a convincing contemporary thriller.””

Norra Skåne

 ”.., this is an unusually well written and absolutely excellent debut in the genre. All we can do is welcome Berggren as one of Sweden’s crime writers and hope that he has more stories to tell.” 

 Borås Tidning

“An engaging novel that entertains as well as informs…” 

Expressen

“… a novel for those readers who think the best parts of the Millennium-books are the ones where Blomquist and Salander dig in the archives.”

Arbetarbladet

“…this book is like a Russian doll; one opens new compartments the whole time, and nothing is as it seems. This has probably amused the author, who shows a more playful side here than that of the pragmatic historian.

But his purpose is deeply moral. He shows these old fighters in Spain, who want to atone for their sins by assuming their responsibilities as members of society. It is a beautiful thought, in our narcissistic age. And, furthermore, there are still forces in Spain that would like to silence the past, including children taken away for adoption by Republicans and mass graves with unidentified Franco victims.

We are living in a time when the interest in historical literature is growing and growing. Possibly we seek answers in the past while living in an era of rapid change. Peter Englund has said: “History at its best is a sort of blend of art and science.” Henrik Berggren does justice to himself in the genre.”

Sveriges Radio

AGENT

Magdalena Hedlund

magdalena@hedlundagency.se
Phone: +46 70-669 05 68