VCUarts Cinema Assistant Professor Kirk Kjeldsen has published his second novel, Land of Hidden Fires.
Occupied Norway, 1943. After seeing an allied plane go down over the mountains, headstrong fifteen year-old Kari Dahlstrøm sets out to locate the wreck. She soon finds the cocky American pilot Lance Mahurin and offers to take him to Sweden, pretending she’s a member of the resistance. While her widower father Erling and the disillusioned Nazi Oberleutnant Conrad Moltke hunt them down, Kari begins to fall for Lance, dreaming of a life with him in America. Over the course of the harrowing journey, though, Kari learns hard truths about those around her as well as discovering unforeseen depths within herself.
Reviews & Praise for Land of Hidden Fires:
“Creating tension is just one of Kjeldsen’s talents. Another is utterly capturing the mindset of a sheltered teenage girl who is falling in love with her rescued (and indifferent) pilot, imagining herself going to America with him. And third, but far from last, is Kjeldsen’s writing. He has masterfully set a story, fraught throughout with danger, against an icy, white, virtually silent tableau – a story that will stay with you long after you’ve finished it.”
– The New Jersey Star-Ledger
“Land of Hidden Fires is a compelling testament to the dangers, and necessity, of resistance. Kjeldsen writes about the quiet horrors of life in wartime with clear-eyed humanity and grace.”
– Colin Winnette, author of Haints Stay
“Despite the high drama and action-driven hunt, the story remains at its core a quiet one, focused on the well-developed, internal struggles of the characters and with the careful, evocative use of language… Kjeldsen’s writing benefits from a deep underlying knowledge, not only of World War II ranks and weaponry-though history buffs should appreciate the details-but also of farming techniques, the hazards of a winter trek through Scandinavian woods, and animal behavior… A quiet and introspective novel of wartime adventure.”
– Kirkus Reviews
“A fine wartime tale of survival and resistance, told with clean, compelling prose. The tough and resourceful Kari will linger in your memory, and the evocative setting will leave you shivering beneath the sheets.”
– Dan Fesperman, author of The Letter Writer
In addition to his work in fiction, Professor Kjeldsen has developed and sold material to both Hollywood and independent producers. During his studies at USC, Kjeldsen was a development assistant at The Sundance Institute, and he has produced more than twenty short films shot on 35mm. His first novel, Tomorrow City, was named one of the ten best books of 2013 by The New Jersey Star-Ledger.
The book is available both in print and in e-book formats!
You can find more information at www.kirkkjeldsen.com