Snakes and Ladders
About the book
One warm summer day in the early 80’s Mariana, an eleven year-old girl, makes a horrific discovery. To the tones of music so familiar to her she finds her father dead on the family’s carousel. Shot and bound to one of the carousel horses he revolves round and round, an image that Mariana has been forced to live with ever since.
Over thirty years later Mariana is still living in the same town on the Swedish west coast. She is the owner of a shop selling antique toys, marionettes, masks and books. Everything changes the day a man called Amnon Goldstein, an American with Jewish roots, moves into the town. Gathering material for a book, he seeks out one inhabitant after the other, getting them to open up. Defenceless, they tell him about their lifes and in the wake of their confessions things start to happen.
But while some are enchanted by Amnon others do not view the developments quite so kindly. And when inexplicable things start occurring, an opposition movement is formed against the foreigner. In their search to find out who Amnon really is and what he wants Mariana is forced to confront the old tragedy, the murder of her father that was never resolved.
What other people have said
A positive review is always a pleasure. These ones made me really happy.
Maria Ernestam is a skilled author with a capacity for dramatazing and capturing her readers. This she proves again in her sixth novel, Daughters of the Marionettes, a story about an unsolved murder committed thirty years ago in a small town on the Swedish west coast. […] Maria Ernestam aspires for more and seeks to explore the reasons behind violence and what causes people to act the way they do. She writes about love and jealosy, about friendship and deceit… Göteborgs-Posten
Maria Ernestam’s novel is just as unexpectedly thrilling and well written as her previous work. Damernas värld
The intrigue is delicate and well composed and it is a great pleasure to read the unusual story that is presented to the reader. In Ernestam’s very own and special universe she shows how childish and irrational people can behave – which makes the characters incredibly realistic … the book is simply and absolutely lovely! Femina