The Absolution: A Thriller

The Absolution: A Thriller

by Yrsa Sigurdardottir


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The Absolution is the third installment in Queen of Icelandic crime fiction Yrsa Sigurdardóttir’s series about the psychologist Freyja and the police officer Huldar.

The police find out about the crime the way everyone does: on Snapchat. The video shows a terrified young woman begging for forgiveness. When her body is found, it is marked with a number “2”.

Detective Huldar joins the investigation, bringing child psychologist Freyja on board to help question the murdered teenager's friends. Soon, they uncover that Stella was far from the angel people claim, but who could have hated her enough to kill?

Then another teenager goes missing, more clips are sent to social media, and the body with a “3” is found. Freyja and Huldar can agree on two things at least: the truth is far from simple. The killer is not done yet. And is there an undiscovered body carrying the number “1” out there?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250136305
Publisher: St. Martin''s Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/11/2020
Series: Children's House , #3
Pages: 368
Sales rank: 35,033
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

YRSA SIGURDARDÓTTIR (pronounced EAR-suh SIG-ur-dar-daughter) lives with her family in Reykjavík. She is a director of one of Iceland’s largest engineering firms. Her work is climbing bestseller lists all over the world, and films are currently in production for several of her books. Her titles include The Day is Dark and Ashes to Dust.

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The Absolution: A Thriller 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
MikeStaff 8 days ago
The Absolution proves the "Queen of Icelandic Fiction" crown remains firmly on the head of Yrsa Sigurdardottir. The latest book in her Children's House Series is as good as you'd expect. These Freyja and Huldar thrillers are as entertaining as any series you can hope to read today. Sigurdardottir skillfully builds a plot around the timely topic of bullying and the tragic consequences which can arise from it. The book features the wit, charm, and cleverness we've come to expect from the author. The book is twisty enough to keep you guessing until the very end.
P-Lopez 9 days ago
The Absolution by Yrsa Sigurdardottir is quite intriguing. The characters were interesting, and each had their own story arcs, which kept the action going and made me want to read more as I finished each chapter. I did not feel I missed anything by reading this book, which is book 3 in the series. It can be read as a standalone book. The book dealt with bullying and social media and the effects each can have on a person directly or indirectly involved, even many years later. The author does a good job of describing how peers can intimidate those they feel are weaker or have a slight difference from themselves. It also shows how it affects adults in the child's life. The author did a nice job of creating a good mystery and how the character's weaved in and out of the storyline. The reveal and ending were satisfying. A solid read overall.
sufue 12 days ago
I have read and enjoyed several of the books in Yrsa Sigurdardottir’s Thora Gudmundsdottir series, so I was happy to receive an ARC of The Absolution, which is the latest title in Sigurdardottir’s newer Children’s House series, in exchange for my honest review. I haven’t read either of the first two books in this series, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I found this series (or at least this book in the series) to be much grittier than the others I’ve read in the Gudmundsdottir series. Not that that series is a cozy series, but in Absolution, the plot revolves around bullying, both online and in person, and the author offers sharp insights into the subject. And the cruelty of the bullying provides a pretty somber background to the book. Still, I found the book to be intriguing, and read it over only a couple of days. I also enjoyed what appears to be an ongoing story arc with the two main characters, Freyja and Huldar, although I have a feeling I missed out a little bit by not having read the first two books in the series. Still Sigurdardottir provides enough background that I didn’t feel like I missed out on a lot. Overall, this is a really solid noir-ish mystery, and I think I’ll go back and pick up the first couple of titles to read as well. My thanks again to Edelweiss and the publisher for the ARC. And also please keep in mind that I try to fight “star-inflation” a little bit. I reserve 5 stars for a very few of my most favorite books, ones I’m likely to read and reread time-and-again, and 4 stars is a great rating from me.
LoriL2 12 days ago
Yrsa Siguroardottir may be my new favorite writer. Her latest book, The Absolution, is a brilliantly plotted, complex page turner that places her at the top of the Nordic noir authors. There is much to be said about this novel, but if I had to distill this review into a single word it would be this: layered. Yrsa's storyline, characters, descriptions – and even her setting – defy simple explanations. The further I read, the more I came to understand why she is touted as the queen of Icelandic crime fiction. Which is not to say the book is for everyone: this is a dark, brutal story about bullying set in a bleak moral landscape. If you're looking for a fun, fast read with a neat ending, The Absolution is not for you. On the other hand, if you're a fan of noir fiction and police procedurals that touch on social issues, the third installment in the Childen's House series may be exactly what you're looking for. Told mostly from the perspectives of Huldur, a Reykjavik police detective, and Freyja, a child psychologist, the novel begins with the murder of a popular teenager at a local cinema. What makes this murder even more gruesome than usual is that the attacker uses the victim's own Snapchat account to broadcast her death to her followers. Not only must viewers cope with the loss of a close friend, but they must also witness what may well be her last moments. However, it soon becomes clear the murdered girl and her friends are not simply victims. They may appear to blithely share every aspect of their lives on social media, but they are hiding secrets – secrets that are as disturbing as they are dangerous. Huldur soon becomes part of the case, as does Freyja, and the story follows their efforts to catch the killer before anyone else dies. Though it is not the focus of the novel, their relationship and its difficulties also held my interest. Both Freyja and Huldur are likeable characters but I can't say whether they should be together or not, which is a nice change from the usual dynamic. And like all Yrsa's characters, they seem terribly human, with the usual stash of flaws and insecurities tucked away beneath competent exteriors. Even the darker characters in this novel are terribly human (though with more of an emphasis on “terrible”). While the acts themselves are heinous, the moral landscape in The Absolution is as gray as the Icelandic sky, with the line between good and evil hopelessly blurred. Ironically, that blurred morality becomes crystal clear on the last page, which is fantastically chilling. On a final note, I want to say that one reason this novel resonated so deeply with me is that its topic is one that has affected me personally. I have also known more than one person who has suffered the consequences of bullying, including cyberbullying—consequences that won't ever be undone. Sadly, I don't think I'm alone in this. Cyberbullying has become so common nowadays it seems no one is untouched. So I was glad to see Yrsa raise the issue in The Absolution. That said, it's a good idea to go into this novel with the understanding that bullying, as well as suicide, are central to the story. Much thanks to St. Martin's Press and NetGalley for providing me an ARC in exchange for an honest review. I look forward to the next book in the series, as well as anything else Yrsa may write. Highly recommended
Reader4102 13 days ago
A young woman is killed in a movie theater bathroom, and her killer videoed the entire murder and then posted it on the victims Snapchat feed. The police are at a loss to who the killer might be because he carefully kept his face covered and left no forensic clues. They don’t even know who to suspect because everyone loved the victim – except her killer. Detective Huldar joins the team investigating the murder and brings Feyja, a child psychologist with whom he has previously worked, on the team as well. This is a well written mystery with well-developed characters and a story line builds in tension on each page. You need not have read the previous two books in this series to enjoy reading this one. My thanks to Hodder & Stoughten and Edelweiss for an eARC.