Eremitten – The Hermit

by Thomas Rydahl

Winner of the Glass Key, 2015.

A brand new car is found crashed on a beach in the popular Canary Island resort of Fuerteventura. In the trunk is a cardboard box containing the body of a small dead boy. No one misses him. There is no trace of the driver, not one single footprint in the sand nor fingerprints on the car, and the odometer is not making any sense.

The last thing Fuerteventura needs is an ugly death to chase away even more tourists from the island’s already half-empty bars and windswept beaches. The local police try to shut down the story calling it a cynical hoax, but long time islander Erhard, who sees more than most people, gets hooked on the mystery a desperate tenacity. He has severed ties with the wife and child back in Denmark several years ago and is muddles through as a taxi driver and occasional piano tuner for the island’s few wealthy families.

The dead boy forces Erhard back to life. But what can an old man, a looser who refuses to keep with the times and doesn’t know anything about cellphones, the Internet and social media, do to solve a murder mystery with ties going far outside of Fuerteventura.

The Hermit is a hard-boiled and heartbreaking suspense novel with the most surprising investigator you can possibly imagine.


Published by Bindslev, Denmark 2014


Croatia, Znanje
Czech Republic, Mlada Fronta
Estonia, Varrak
Finland, Minerva
France, Editions Belfond
Germany, Heyne
Japan, Hayakawa
The Netherlands, De Geus
Poland, Wydawnictwo Czarna Owca
Russia, Centrepolygraph
Serbia, Kamelia izdavaštvo
Spain, Destino
Sweden, Bokfabriken
UK/US, Oneworld Publications


Wow! It will knock you off your feet.
Go’morgen Danmark

Thomas Rydahl is an amazing writer (…) Craftsmanship at its very best.

A warm and gripping story

A monstrously different crime novel with lots of charm.

A remarkable story (…) Might Thomas Rydahl be the new star on the Danish crime-writing sky?
Frk. Bogorm

A novel you devour in one bite

A riveting read
K’s Bognoter

One of the most unique detectives you can ever meet in contemporary suspense literature.

A great debut novel
I actually became a hermit myself during the days I was caught up in the story
Nilles litteratur

A most readable crime novel, with Grahame Green like overtones

Beautifully written (…) The story is grand and goes well together with the surprising ending
Eibes Bogblog

A well-constructed Danish crime novel where nothing seems contrite or unbelievable
Buch’s Books

Completely different and a lot more ambitious than the stacks of socio-political crime novels

A remarkable publication for the genre and a great show of strength.
Excited reading

Nordic literature mixes with Spanish characters and sometimes collides with the world to open the door for what could be a new line of thrillers. A great main character. reader review

Traces of Shakespeare and Philip Marlowe from a narrator who continuously follows the hermit. Emotional and very well written. Recommendable reader review

“The Hermit” is one of those novels in which the scenario is as important as the characters. In fact, one could say that Fuerteventura is a character, and distilled in the pages of the novel, Rydahl as put much effort into portraying the island in the best way possible. ”The Hermit” is an ambitious thriller that stands out for the complexity of its main character and their scenarios.