Publisher: Other Press
Other Press: various formats
Myrthen Bergmann is witness of the unlucky dead of her twin sister as a child. Not sure if it was an accident or not she forms her own story in her head. Based on her experience she decides to devote her life to religion and God.
Alta Krol dreams of a life as an artist. Both life in the town of Verra, a small coal mining community. Both woman keep secrets and when a terrible accident happen both loose everything.
Fourteen years later we meet Lydia and her son Gabriel. Gabriel seems to know what the secrets are that are hidden in the small community and with his 3.5 years of age he does not know they have to stay secret. Every person in Verra is curious what Gabriel can reveal about the accident that happened so long ago.
This book runs on the atmosphere. I felt an outsider getting a small view of a very closed community. I felt that there are secrets. That I was not told everything despite getting the whole story.
I did not like Myrthen much but I guess she is positioned like that. Early in the book I had the feeling there was more wrong with her than just a very unhealthy obsession with religion. There are more signals from people in her surrounding that it is the case but it never gets explained. Alta is easier to relate with though I did have some trouble with a few of her motivations concerning her relationship. Reading about both woman growing up in the same town with such different lives but still being connected was interesting.
Gabriel's part of the story was lost on me. I read it but it was not what I imagined it would be. Still I kept reading as I had to know if more would happen and what the result would be.