The Ice Beneath Her

A young woman is found beheaded in an infamous business tycoon’s marble-lined hallway. The businessman, scandal-ridden CEO of the retail chain Clothes&More, is missing without a trace. Who is the dead woman? And who is the brutal killer who wielded the machete?

Rewind two months earlier: We meet Emma, a timid beauty with a troubled past. Emma works as a sales clerk in a branch of Clothes&More. Her life is turned upside down when the company’s controversial CEO Jesper Orre walks into the store and their chance encounter leads to a love affair. Because of his public persona, Jesper insists their relationship be kept a secret. Emma’s world is shaken a second time when Jesper suddenly leaves her without explanation. As frightening things begin to happen to Emma, she suspects Jesper is responsible. Why does he want to hurt her? And how far would he go to silence his secret lover?

Back in the present, the police struggle to track down Jesper Orre and identify the decapitated woman found murdered in his home. Veteran police investigator Peter Lindgren is put on the case that has striking similarities to an unsolved murder he worked on ten years earlier. Psychological profiler Hanne Lagerlind-Schön has just been given a diagnosis of onset dementia that leads her to question the life she finds herself living: why stay with her bully of a husband when she has so little time left? When she gets pulled into the murder investigation, Hanne comes face to face with her past: Peter, with whom she once had a whirlwind affair but whose commitment issues left them both deeply scarred. While they struggle to hunt down a brutal murderer, Hanne and Peter are inevitably drawn together once again.

The Ice Beneath Her is an entrancing story about love, betrayal, and obsession that is simply impossible to put down. What does love do to us, and what can love make us do? Skilled suspense writer Camilla Grebe takes the reader on a wild ride with twists at every turn of the page. Get ready to be seduced and shocked in this chilling psychological thriller that surprises like The Girl on the Train and chills like Gone Girl.

“The decapitation of a young woman propels Grebe’s exceptional solo debut, which examines three lives broken by failures to take responsibility in a Stockholm where even the sky is crying’.”
Publishers Weekly, starred review (US)

“Veteran coauthor Grebe takes her first solo turn in this tale of three troubled souls linked by a horrific crime—and what a turn it is. […] Each of these stories—Peter’s, Hanne’s, and Emma’s—is compelling enough to fuel an entire novel; Grebe’s skill in weaving them together is impressive. A tour de force that lifts its author to the front rank among the increasingly crowded field of Nordic noir.
Kirkus, starred review (US)

“When a new Scandinavian mystery hits the stands, you pretty much know it’s going to be good, and Swedish author Camil­la Grebe’s The Ice Beneath Her, translated by Elizabeth Clark Wessel, does not let the team down. All the tried- and-true adjectives apply here: gripping, atmospheric, nuanced and, of course, graphically violent. […] Through it all, the true killer remains as elusive as smoke on a breezy day, and when the twist comes, it’s one that even jaded Nordic noir fans likely won’t see coming.”
Bookpage (US)

The Ice Beneath Her is a veritable page-turner […] This is seriously good.”
Kristianstadsbladet (SE)

“This is Scandi-noir at its powerful bleakest.”
DAILY MAIL (UK)

“Grebe shifts elegantly between the three narrators, lets the reader view the story and the relationships of those concerned from many different angles, and creates a titillating sense of uncertainty. […] The Ice Beneath Her is one of this year’s most interesting Swedish crime reads. The story dares to be told in a different way and is not afraid to examine the darkest aspects of love.”
Skånska Dagbladet (SE)

“This book has all the essential components of great Scandinavian crime fiction: a strong police prodecudral, a dark, moody atmosphere, and compelling, burdened detectives – plus this book has a voice all its own, which delivers twists and unreliable narrators that can compete with the best of modern psychological thrillers. In short, it’s the perfect blend of current crime fiction trends with the ageless strength of Nordic Noir. […] I’m rarely a loss for words when it comes to reviewing crime books, but this one left me speechless. This book is a standout – not just a standout within the Scandinavian crime genre, but a standout, period. […] there is something undeniably thrilling about watching an author push the envelope of his or her genre – and Camilla Grebe does so effortlessly. […] In The Ice Beneath Her, Camilla grebe has found a unique freedom to blend the best of Nordic Noir with a plot twist that completely blew me away.”
Crime by the Book, 5/5 (US)

“A cleverly constructed thriller.”
Westdeutsche Allgemeine, 4/5 (DE)

“This Swedish novel, which is perfect for fans of Jo Nesbo, is unsettling, menacing and compulsively written. It also delivers a rewarding ending that we did not see coming – one that stayed with us long after we stopped reading.”
Heatworld (UK)

“The characters are masterfully portrayed as all the different aspects of their personalities are revealed to us, almost as if they wish to make themselves known to the reader. This very attention to detail also characterizes the descriptions of places and milieus: from the cold snowy outside scenery to the warm environments of bars and houses. […] The author suceeds in surprising us with an ending which was impossible to anticipate.”
Thriller Nord (IT)

“Grebe moves between the perspectives of three first person characters throughout the book, and this shift is what makes The Ice Beneath Her so utterly successful.”
Stavanger Aftenblad, 5/6 (NO)

“A thriller with an ending that hits you with full force.”
TV STAR (DE)

“After the first chapter, I thought this would be a crime novel like any other. But it’s not that simple. Here [in this book] nothing is what it seems. […] Hard to put down. Camilla Grebe is an insightful and nimble writer.”
Norran (SE)

“I could not put it down – it creeps under your skin and stays there.”
LO MEdia (NO)

“Intelligent plot with intriguing characters who capture the reader […] It’s a smart novel. Camilla Grebe has succeeded in creating characters who feel authentic and present.”
DAST Magazine (SE)

“A captivating, thrilling, and frightening crime novel about failure, infidelity, and the ugliest of feelings. Camilla Grebe has previously with great success written fantastic crime novels with her sister Åsa Träff, but she is definitely good on her own, and I look forward to reading the next book in the series.”
Femina (DK)

“Grebe has been compared with Jo Nesbo. I think Swedish Camilla Grebe stands alone. […] With The Ice Beneath Her, we have a craftswoman at work. […] A must read book about obsession, betrayal and of course, love.  Highly recommended.”
Frost Magazine (UK)

The Ice Beneath Her by Camilla Grebe is a salutary reminder that the talented Grebe deserves the kind of breakthrough some of her less accomplished peers have already enjoyed. Her protagonist here, Emma, is subtly realised, as is the latter’s relationship with an older man — who disappears. While the novel may be marketed as Scandinavian crime fiction, the level of psychological veracity is sui generis.”
Crimetime (UK)

“A new voice that combines the best from Scandinavian authors Jo Nesbø and Anne Holt, with the rhythm and suspense of American thrillers like The Girl on the Train. […] The reader is forced to try to solve a puzzle that seems impossible to figure out. Then comes the ending. And it’s simply astonishing. Addictive.”
Legano News (IT)

The Ice Beneath Her is a tragic, yet at the same time simply brilliant, novel to read under the darkness of autumn next to a crackling fire.”
Nya Kristinehamnsposten (SE)

“I’m still clapping my little hands with delight after having read this book. Camilla Grebe is ‘spot on’, and as a reader you’re quickly drawn into a story that might as well have taken place right before your eyes. You wouldn’t suspect any danger before it was too late. […] There’s something off, a bad feeling in your gut, you guess and guess and try to find clues in the book to work out the plot. I did not succeed, and I’m still not convinced everything was quite as it seemed in the end. […] I’m sure The Ice Beneath Her will delight many crime readers. It has everything it takes to stand out, and it’s just not yet another crime novel in your bookcase.”
Krimifan (DK)

The Ice Beneath Her is a book that holds a lot between its pages. Apart from a few mysterious disappearances and extremely brutal murders, it’s about the power and betrayal of men. […] This is a story that holds the shadow-side of life. The protagonists are at a crossroads. Something simply must happen, otherwise they’re at risk of breaking apart. Perhaps they’ll break anyway, but before then they’ll want to fight for some kind of justice.”
Dagens bok, 7/10 (SE)

“A plot that snakes its way into unpredictable directions when you least expect it and keeps the reader alert at all times, allied with particularly strong characterisation make this a psychological thriller of note. Obsession, madness, nail-biting suspense, the menu couldn’t be heavier but is at all times severely addictive.”
Love Reading (UK)

“The prose is startlingly calm as it steers the characters through their personal torment until their transformations are as unpredictable as the final outcome. That ending pulled the rug from under my feet, and I never suspected a thing.”
Little Bookness Lane, blog (UK)

“Camilla Grebe delivers a taut and creeping thriller with great psychological depth. Starting from the very first page, she gradually builds atmosphere and milieu, shifting both tense and narrative voice with rare elegance […] Grebe also has a unique voice and an amazing linguistic presence that spellbinds me completely. She’s clearly inspired by the classic police novel, but Grebe makes her story feel very modern, fresh and smart. In my opinion this is exactly how a thriller should be written in 2015. The Ice Beneath Her is definitely one of the best books of the year. If you haven’t already done so, you should read it immediately.”
Johannas Deckarhörna, blog (SE)

The Ice Beneath Her is a strong story and the character portraits are especially convincing and well done. […] The book can be recommended to all crime readers.”
Crimegarden (SE)

“A very good psychological thriller, perhaps the best this year!”
Mysterierna, blog (SE)

“A standout thriller.”
The Book Trail (UK)

“As well as being an intriguing, past-paced, page-turner of a psychological thriller, the book addresses the bigger issues of commitment, betrayal and loss and their effect on the individual. […] this is [Grebe’s] debut as a solo author and it is a very accomplished and rewarding read.”
Nudge Books (UK)

“There is some very clever plotting in this book, it’s very dark and disturbing, Grebe weaves together twists and turns that have the reader guessing at what might happen next. I feel that I should praise the translation of this book. All too often when a book is translated into English, something can be ‘lost’ but I am so pleased that is not the case with this one. It has the hallmarks of a Scandi thriller, cold, dark and direct which really work well here, making this one of the best books I’ve read this year.”
The Quiet Knitter, blog (UK)

“Well-written, well-planned and well-executed this book will hopefully be the forerunner of more to come. Thoroughly enjoyable.”
All Things Bookie, blog 5/5 (UK)

“This is one of the best suspense novels I’ve read this year. […] Entertaining, terrifying, thrilling, and well-written. […] A book you just have to read!”
Läsa och lyssna, blog (SE)

“This book offers many surprises, and just as you think you’ve figured things out, Grebe makes a sharp turn. It’s skillful, thrilling, and unexpected!”
Karin boktok, blog (SE)

The Ice Beneath Her by Camilla Grebe is a skillfully constructed suspense novel, and its greatest strength is the profound character portrayals.”
En fiktiv resa, blog (SE)

 

“Slowly and subtly, Camilla Grebe lets The Ice Beneath Her unfold into a multilayered and psychologically nuanced murder mystery where the truth, rather than drawing nearer, keeps slipping further and further away – until it strikes with full force.”
Arne Dahl

“Thrilling characters and expertly written, down to the very last detail. I didn’t actually have time to read, and did everything to try to put the book down. But I simply couldn’t. Not until the last page had been read.”
Stefan Ahnhem

Tense. Gripping. And utterly unpredictable. Grebe is an extraordinarily gifted writer and a master of suspense.
Kristina Ohlsson

“The Ice Beneath Her deserves to be called a page turner – I read it in one sitting! The narrative is high paced and the twists superb.”
Cecilia Ekbäck

Camilla Grebe is a leading Swedish suspense writer, having published two previous successful series with co-authors. In 2015 she broke out as a solo author with the critically acclaimed psychological thriller The Ice Beneath Her. It was followed by Diary from My Disappearance in 2017.

Learn more about Camilla Grebe