Investigator Jessica Niemi is in a race against time to find the link between a body with strange markings that has washed up on a frigid shore in Finland and two mysterious disappearances in this terrifying new novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Witch Hunter.
Six months have passed since Jessica’s encounter with the mysterious serial-killing coven of witches and the death of her mentor Erne. Her nightmares about her mother and the witchcraft that undid her have only gotten worse, but she’s doing what she can to stay focused. Her homicide squad, now under new leadership, has been given a murder case and a new series of disappearances to investigate. A young woman’s corpse has washed up on an icy beach, and two famous Instagram influencers have gone missing at the same time.
The missing influencers and the murdered woman all have ties to a sinister cult. Jessica finds an eerie painting–of a lighthouse on a frigid island–as she investigates and under the picture is a gruesome poem detailing a murder. The nightmares about her dead mother have intensified and seem all too real, making Jessica wonder if the woman might be trying to tell her something about the killings. And as Jessica works frantically to solve her latest case, her terrifying past and the coven of witches that almost killed her shockingly reemerge and threaten to destroy her.
What a chilling atmosphere! The dark, cold winter in Helsinki makes this already tense thriller feel somehow even more thrilling. Jessica is an investigator with a touch of paranormal ability, but that doesn’t detract from the police procedural feel of the book. She is flawed and sometimes vulnerable, but still powers through and solves the crime. There are twists and turns throughout, and the conclusion is never obvious. This was a highly enjoyable mystery and I look forward to the next novel in the series.
Max Seeck is a Finnish mystery writer, and The Ice Coven is the second installment in the Jessica Niemi series. The first book is The Witch Hunter, which I have not yet read but I did go out and buy a copy after reading The Ice Coven. I can’t wait to find out about Jessica’s past in more detail.
Thank you to Penguin Random House and Netgalley for a digital ARC of the book.