It’s far too hot!! I’ve said it. It’s too bloody hot. After another sleepless night where I can’t get any shut-eye because of the temperature, I dug out my old copy of Miss Smila’s Feeling For Snow, and quickly immersed myself in the desolate, cold landscape of Peter Høeg’s Scandinavian setting, which travels from Denmark through to the chilly environs of Greenland.
Pretty quickly I’d finished this and moved onto a re-reading of an old favourite by Henning Mankell, which again satisfied my craving for something set in a cold landscape. Idling away my sleepless nights indulging in vicarious snowbound adventures has become my go-to now, as I continue to struggle against insomnia thanks to the oppressive heat which, frankly, doesn’t belong in the UK, no matter what time of year it is.
Whilst I appreciate that beachgoers and the like probably spend their days lazing about reading trashy rom-coms or those high-octane thrillers that are basically today’s pulp-fiction, there is something to be said for reading a really good thriller with the added bonus of being set somewhere cold when you’re not actually on holiday, but stuck at home in between shifts, and trying desperately to get some much-needed kip.
There’s lots of great Scandinavian crime fiction out there, and with famed writers such as Jo Nesbø putting out new books on a regular basis, so there should be enough to keep me busy over the coming months while the temperature remains sweltering and the weather humid.
Look, I understand that it’s not the solution to this unprecedented heat wave, but at the end of the day Scandinavian crime fiction is brilliantly well-written and completely gripping, so even if it doesn’t work for cooling you down, at least it’s something to do to while away the days until we finally get the cold back.