The Hitman‘s Guide to Housecleaning
(10 ráð til að hætta að drepa fólk og byrja að vaska upp, 2008)
It is said that every writer has at least one crime novel in them, though many choose never to let their beasts run free. Here, Hallgrímur Helgason, author of 101 Reykjavík and Woman at 1000 Degrees, takes on the hardboiled pulp genre and uses it for his own nefarious purposes. The result is a Tarantino-esque romp that is part Mickey Spillane and part John Kennedy Toole.
The book follows the exploits of Tomislav “Toxic” Bokšic, a cocksure hitman for the Croatian mafia who needs to go into hiding after a botched hit. Through a series of unfortunate events, he ends up in Iceland, hiding under the identity of an American minister in a country where murder is a rarity and gunmen have little to do but tend to their domestic chores. Though Toxic initially struggles to contain his violent tendencies, he is soon adapting to his new homeland and making strides to better himself.
In “Toxic” Bokšic, Hallgrímur Helgason lets loose a hell-for-leather narrative voice that lends a hilarious commentary to this action fast paced story, all the while providing the reader with a unique outsider’s perspective on the mundane realities and absurdities of modern Icelandic society.