Gateway Gazette

From My Bookshelf: Giles Blunt

By Lynn Willoughby

Forty Words for Sorrow ~ Giles Blunt

Another Canadian author who delivers.  In the northern Ontario town of Algonquin Bay there have been three young teenagers tortured and murdered.  Three that the police know of!  The bodies were found at different sites, all in winter, which compromised forensic evidence.
Detective John Cardinal insists there is a link and possibly more bodies.  In this small community one murder is rare, three, then four – this becomes a spree!  With mounting pressure from above, the media, the OPP and the RCMP, Cardinal feels hunted himself.
As a Canadian, you will enjoy this read.  The winter references, the cold, the necessary clothing, talk of fishing and canoe trips will all be familiar.  The tension Blunt creates will keep you reading.
The title of this book of fiction is in reference to the fact that the Inuit have fifty words for snow.  Cardinal feels the families of the murdered teens must have fifty words for sorrow.
I liked Blunt’s way with words, his descriptions of wind, snow, cold and the sounds of the shifting ice in Algonquin Bay.  This book is a thriller but it is also about police procedure and an exploration of the region’s landscape and its people.  “It is powerful and very Canadian.”
  • Blackfly Season
  • By the Time You Read This
…………………and several others

Who Knew?

Different ice produces different sounds.  A high pitched noise likely means you have clear ice – the glassy, see through kind found under cold, still, non-snowy conditions.  Snow ice – which is opaque, produces a lower frequency sound.

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