The year is 2001 and Mia Krüger is a student at the police academy, young and determined to become the first female to join the Norwegian SWAT team. She has both the mental and physical strength to pull it off, but her plans are derailed when she takes a test that shows she has a unique talent for looking at cases in an unconventional way and gets an offer she can’t refuse. Little does Mia know that this life-changing decision will propel her – a positive but very sensitive young woman – into a world of darkness.
Holger Munch is excited to have been appointed the head of a new investigative unit and has just put together a team of Norway’s best detectives. The unit is quickly put to the test when two eleven-year-old boys are found killed in a field in a suburban area outside of Oslo. The scene is odd and disturbing, with a red wolf carefully placed between them. It resembles an unsolved case from Sweden, where two boys the same age had been found in a similar way, and where the killer is still on the loose.
Holger Munch is looking for a way to crack the case when he gets a call from an old friend, the headmaster of the police academy, who tells him they have an extremely talented student who has scored through the roof on one of their tests. Munch meets the young Mia Krüger at a café and shows her pictures from the crime scenes in Sweden and Norway. She only needs minutes to identify details the seasoned investigators hadn’t even thought of. Munch hires her on the spot.
Meanwhile, Mia Krüger’s twin sister Sigrid, a heroin addict, has just gone missing. Mia spends her nights desperately searching Oslo’s seedy underbelly in the hope of finding Sigrid.
The clock is ticking, and Munch’s new elite unit soon gets reinforcement in Patrick Olsson, a forty-year-old Swedish psychiatrist and criminal profiler who worked on the unsolved Swedish case. Mia is drawn to Patrick’s charismatic personality and extreme intellect, and together they go deep into the killer’s mind, trying to decipher the almost invisible clues he has left them.
When two more eleven-year-old boys disappear, the race to catch the killer intensifies, and Mia makes a shocking discovery: Patrick has never been involved in the case in Sweden. And no-one knows who he actually is…
“Samuel Bjørk has been one of my favourite Norwegian crime writers ever since his debut in 2013 with I’m Traveling Alone. With White as Snow, he won’t make anyone disappointed, as the first installment of a new series this seems as promising as the series he started in 2013 and finished in 2018 with The Boy in the Headlights. Bjørk once again delivers tight, dense, and thrilling suspense in a fashion mastered by few Norwegian writers. Over nearly 500 pages he shakes the readers to the core and makes them feel as if they’re on a roller coaster. White as Snow is a magnificent crime novel, and one of those rare all-consuming reads. […] In White as Snow, Bjørk offers an ice-cold atmosphere which keeps his readers on edge until the very last page. I am in awe of his storytelling, and I take my hat off. I am already excited for the next book in the series. May it come swiftly.”
Randaberg 24, 5/6 stars (NO)