Killer Nashville Book of the Day

“Wolf Winter” By Cecilia Ekbäck
 / Reviewed by Kimn F. Hinkson

Purchase “Wolf Winter” or read other reviews through Killer Nashville’s affiliate,*

Cecilia Ekback, by Sean Gannon
Cecilia Ekbäck, by Sean Gannon

In her debut novel, Cecilia Ekbäck engages the form with a pervasive, atmospheric prose style that is rich with subtle, elegant, and suspenseful variation. Establishing curious intimacies between human nature and the environment, intuition and reason, and deception and reality, Ekbäck intertwines fantasy, mystery, and thriller in an engrossing spiral of intrigue.

Set in early 18th century Swedish Lapland, “Wolf Winter” is the story of an earth woman, Maija, who after leaving behind a troubled past, settles on land near Blackåsen Mountain with her husband and daughters. But the discovery of a dead man shatters the quietude of the settlers’ lives and rouses Maija to pursue the truth when all in their village would rather forget.

Tasked with their survival, the family struggles to endure a brutal winter while learning the mysteries behind Blackåsen and its furtive inhabitants. They are drawn into a hostile and primitive world kindred to the anguish of the oppressed. Maija and her daughters learn to harness their own instinctual and supernatural abilities when the man of the house walks off into the snow, leaving them behind.

Using their wits and intuition to keep the wolves at bay, Ekbäck draws attention to the beauty and power of the female soul, faithfully abstaining from the widespread understanding of a woman’s role in society. Her novel reflects on how damaging it is to the balance of nature when women are a feared and contained species. Ekbäck’s portrait of the distant past serves as an ominous reminder of an impaired and unstable world.


Kimn Hinkson is like most over-caffeinated, introverted bibliophiles: indifferent to most other items on the planet. Finding that works of literature, opposed to human beings, lend their gifts absolutely free to those who brave the page, she has procured a sense of forbearance via reading in order to survive this otherwise impoverished existence. Other readers are already familiar with the pretty words they give to the most adverse, uncongenial characters. Somewhere between an insurrectionist and a mereological nihilist, Kimn is one of them.

(If you have a book you would like featured, send an ARC for consideration. The Killer Nashville Book Reviews are coordinated by Clay Stafford with the irreplaceable assistance of Meaghan Hill, Maria Giordano, Will Chessor, and credited guest reviewers. For more writer resources, visit us at

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