Review written by: Jessica C.
~Once upon a time, there was a night that never ended. With its darkness, it devoured the sun, strangling all light and spreading its cold black hands over the earth. The night glued the eyes of humanity shut eternally, making dreams deeper and stranger, making man and woman alike forget themselves and glide along arm in arm with imagined creatures, losing their own memories~
Granted when I first entered Simukka’s world of As Red as Blood I was intrigued by the references to Snow White with a far off the beaten path twist. There are no dwarves, there are no evil queens, and there is no prince… yet. However there is a Polar Bear, an unexpected friend, a drug ring, a murder, and a bag full of bloody money. Do I have your attention yet?
Simukka follows in the same line of storytelling as Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbo by introducing the reader to brilliant characters that are a bit rough around the edges and slightly (okay perhaps a lot) introverted. As Red as Blood introduces us to Lumikki, a girl minding her own business until she finds blood stained money hanging in a dark room. From here the main character is pulled into a whirlwind attempt to help a trio of students find the source of the money.
However, trying to find the origins of the money lead to revelations of affairs, dirty cops, dead bodies, and expected murder attempts on Lumikki herself when she is left in a case of mistaken identity. For Lumikki, who is so at peace with her own introvert world the events throw her off guard and leave her raw and exposed to unexpected situations. From the point of going to a drug lord’s exclusive costume ball dressed as none other than Snow White, to ending up in her own ironic frozen ‘casket’, Lumikki finds herself lost in a maliciously dark version of well known fairy tales.
~Once upon a time, there was a girl who learned fear. Fairy tales do not begin this way. Other, darker stories do.~
However, as the story unfurls and the world is exposed to Lumikki she finds that sometimes the darkest events bring forth a pin point of light. New friends are made and the strength to overcome fear once more is awakened in a normally quiet girl.
As Red as Blood is a swift, heart racing read with a heroine that is admirable and human. While strong and aloof, Lumikki remains tangible to the reader due to the glimpses of just how vulnerable she truly is. I loved Lumikki as a character and her story as it was brought to life in flash backs. Simukka does equal justice to the minor characters in the As Red as Blood. If anything Red as Blood leaves me hoping they will obtain the rights to make the trilogy a movie or a television program it is just that good. Simukka’s writing plays out like a movie script and is a visual read to the reader. I hope the readers enjoy it as much as I did. If you enjoy Jo Nesbo and the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy than I suggest you add Salla Simukka to your list of authors to keep an eye on. Stay tuned for when I review As White as Snow, the next book in the trilogy. Until next time readers, enjoy your reading!
~Once upon a time, there was a little key that could fit in any lock. Fairy tales don’t begin that way. That’s how other, brighter stories begin.~