Cold Comfort

8 December 2011

It’s a vaguely uncomfortable feeling of being in limbo. Cold Comfort (G2) is finished. Gunnhildur’s next outing has been out of my hands for a good while now while the publishers came up with suitable covers. Both the Constable (UK) and the Soho Press (US) covers look good, although the Soho one looks more menacing than the rather arty black-and-white Frozen Out/Assets (G1) cover.
But this time there have been no demands to change the title. At least, there were a few shufflings of feet on the subject, but I had my way and we’ve stuck to Cold Comfort. It seems that it could have struck a chord with Cold Comfort Farm, although it strikes me that the reading public isn’t so daft as to confuse a gløømy Nordic crime story with a comic novel (albeit a wonderful one) written almost seventy years ago. Gunna may have a few things in common with Aunt Ada Doom, but as far as I know she hasn’t seen anything nasty in the woodshed, although it’s an interesting possibility
Cold Comfort is already on reviewers’ desks in the US, where the book is published next month alongside the paperback of Frozen Assets. There’s even a review out there already, which took me by surprise. The UK version isn’t out until the Ides of March, which is only right and proper for a book that kicks off with murder. I’m in deeply debt to Yrsa Sigurdardóttir for the cover blurb she wrote for Cold Comfort – ‘A great read – leaves you craving the next instalment’.
But now it’s head down to make progress with G3, provisionally entitled Chilled to the Bone. This time Gunnhildur is far from Reykjavík and up in the Westfjords among remote farms and small villages that occupy the narrow strip of land between the mountains and the sea. There are some old characters, and a few new ones, and with the first draft around 80% written, I still don’t know who the villain is.
Then there’s G4, no title yet, that’s waiting for G3 to be finished. Oddly enough, I know exactly who the villain is for that one, even though only a fraction of the book has been written so far. But I could still change my mind.

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