thriller by Hans Jakob Helms

trans. title: The Fjord of the Dead

 

”And the object of the trip?” Oskar repeated, talking to Mahler’s back.
”Well, unfortunately, a Greenlander has been found dead down there. He has to be brought home and we want him to have an escort.”
”We?”
”Yes, the foreign Ministry. He’s the son of the Mayor of Qaanaaq. This is exactly what we mean by public diplomacy.”
”Qaanaaq up by Thule?”
”Yes. Qaanaaq, the town north of the Thule Base. A really interesting place. Probably the last real outpost of the hunting culture in Greenland. Fantastic.”
Oskar looked up at the map behind the desk. Thule was a long way away. So was Kenya.
”Why me?” he asked.
”How long have you been here now, my friend?” replied Mahler.
”Just over six months,” said Oskar and thought of how surprised he was to get the job.
”So it’s about time you started to spread your wings a bit,” said Mahler, returning to his seat. ”It’s all part of the service. And our department needs to keep in touch with the people in the field. After all, we are supposed to be spreading the word about what they do, aren’t we?”
”Yes,” said Oskar, ”and thank you.”
”That’s fine,” said Mahler. ”We’ll have to be prepared that this death will make the news. So you had better look into what he was actually doing down there. I’m sure you’ll do a splendid job. We are very pleased with your work.”
”What did he die from?” said Oskar.
”Love,” said Mahler. ”We think he died from love.”

 

the book

A Greenlander is found murdered in Nairobi. At first it looks like a love affair gone wrong but, as Oskar K. Sonne is in Nairobi to transport the dead Greenlander home to Qaanaaq, he starts to suspect something. His suspicion leads to Project Iceworm – a project from the early 60’s where the American military planned a gigantic system of tunnels and nuclear missiles under the Greenlandic icecap. Unwillingly, Oskar K. Sonne is sent on a journey where he is being haunted – and hunted – by ghosts of the past, the present, and even death…

 

the author

Hans Jakob Helms was born in 1949 in Ammassalik, Eastern Greenland. His parents were Danes, and he was raised in both Denmark and Greenland. He has a Master’s Degree in Danish and Literature as well as in Ethnography. He has been the head of the foreign department in the Greenlandic Home Rule and a longstanding member of the committee controlling the American presence in Greenland. He has worked for many years as a consultant for the Greenlandic party, Siumut, in the Danish Parliament.

 

NB! A partial translation in English is available for this book

 

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