On the idyllic island of Öland, off the coast of northern Sweden, a young couple from Stockholm tries to start life afresh. For Joakim and Katrine Westin, reclaiming a long-neglected family manor will be a labor of love, as they slowly bring the sprawling home back to life and introduce their two children to the island’s woodlands, glens, and beaches. But in the Westins’ new home, there are things that cannot be repaired, lives that have gone wrong, and secrets that have followed them. When the family is struck by tragedy, it’s up to grief-stricken Joakim to put together a puzzle of inexplicable loss, unbearable suspicion, and tangled lives. In this powerhouse of suspense–at once a crime novel and a searing family drama–a home built as a shelter from the sea becomes a human storm of murder.
On a gray September day, on an island off the coast of Sweden, six -year -old Jens Davidsson ventured out of his backyard, walked out into a fog, and vanished….Now twenty years have passed, and in this magnificent debut novel of suspense—a runaway bestseller in Sweden—the boy’s mother returns to the place where her son disappeared, drawn by a chilling package sent in the mail… In it, lovingly wrapped, is one of Jens’ sandals—sandals Julia Davidsson put on her son’s feet that very last morning.
Now, with only a handful of clues, Julia and her father are questioning islanders who were present the day Jens vanished—and making a shocking connection to Öland’s most notorious murder case: the killing spree of a wealthy young man who fled the island and died years before Jens was even born. Suddenly the island that once seemed so achingly familiar turns strange and dangerous… Until Julia finds herself facing truths she never imagined—about what really happened on that September day twenty years ago, about who may have crossed paths with little Jens in the fog, and how a child could truly vanish without a trace…until now.