American by Day

Narrated by: Sean Mangan
Series: Norwegian By Night, Book 2
Length: 11 hrs and 44 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (232 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A gripping and timely novel that follows Sigrid - the dry-witted detective from Derek B. Miller's best-selling debut Norwegian by Night - from Oslo to the United States on a quest to find her missing brother.

She knew it was a weird place.

She'd heard the stories, seen the movies, read the books. But now police Chief Inspector Sigrid Ødegård has to leave her native Norway and actually go there - to that land across the Atlantic where her missing brother is implicated in the mysterious death of a prominent African-American academic. America. Sigrid is plunged into a United States where race and identity, politics and promise, reverberate in every aspect of daily life. Working with - or, if necessary, against - the police, she must negotiate the local political minefields and navigate the backwoods of the Adirondacks to uncover the truth before events escalate further.

Refreshingly funny, slyly perceptive, American by Day secures Derek B. Miller's place as one of our most imaginative and entertaining novelists.

©2018 Derek B. Miller (P)2018 Audible, Inc.
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Political diatribe........terrible book

Let me first start off by saying that I try very hard to find the positives with books from all various genes, and I try not to tear down the author's work. This book just had me boiling over the pompous and insulting way that the author (who is also American and married to a Norwegian) portrayed Americans and the country as a whole. Apparently we are all ignoramuses that are overweight and we could certainly look to Norway as a guiding light for all things positive and right in the world. I have never felt such insult and anger when reading a work of fiction as I did with this book.

I was looking forward to reading this book because I really enjoyed book 1, Norwegian by Night. I gave the author more respect than he did his readership by actually finishing the book so that I could give an honest review. Inspector Sigrid Odegard comes to the US to locate her missing brother per her father's request. What kind of father lets his daughter go on a manhunt for her own brother in a foreign country and just waits for word back? Ok, moving on. Her brother, Markus, was dating a African American woman named Lydia who was also an academic. Sigrid and Sheriff Irv set off to unravel the mystery of where Markus is, who killed his fiancee (Lydia), or did she die by committing suicide? Sigrid is a flat character pretty much throughout the entire book. For someone who has a missing brother that is wanted in connection to the death of his fiancee, she showed very little emotion. She was just basically the mouthpiece of the author's pessimistic views and disdain for America and it's citizens.

It makes more sense now that I am aware that the author has a UK agent. I couldn't figure out how in the world an American agent would (in the best interests of sales and etc,) allow an author to completely insult his readership. That made absolutely zero sense to me. Even if you take this out of the book (which is most of the book), the story line is still horrible. So basically it's a pissing contest between Sigrid and Sheriff Irv to see whose country is better. All of the terrible race relations that we have here would be so much better if we were like Norway. Oh, and let's not forget that there is the unsolved death of Sigrid's brother buried in the background of the story. This book just goes so far off the rails and it's a terrible sequel to Norwegian by Night. The author has lost his readership in me after this terrible book. I'll never read another word he writes again. Enjoy Norway, Mr. Miller, but don't expect to line your pockets with any of my USD.

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Not quite as good as...

....Norwegian by night which has a high “quirk value”. This follows on but is a little too preachy about us culture and bad behaviors versus Norway. Still it’s worth it. Good ending.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Of yes, I HAVE enjoyed this program!

It's such a joy to find a new favorite author - both this book and 'Norwegian by Night' were wonderful reads. Observant, astute, philosophical, insightful - and with fantastic characters and a liberal dose of laugh-out-loud humor! I could easily spend HUNDREDS of hours with both Sheldon and Sigrid. I sincerely hope more books are in the works!

2 people found this helpful

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Fun, Murder, and Twists!

punfest, snark-fest, mystery, murder-investigation, twisty

*She is foreign, he can't place the accent though. The three most common foreign accents up here in upstate New York are French Canadian, Mexican, and Brooklyn, and she doesn't sound like any of the three. *
That should give a clue about the humor! The mystery itself is quite well done, the suspense is fueled by red herrings, and plot twists, and each of the characters certainly are. The publisher's blurb gives hints and there is no need for spoilers, but the humor and godawful puns will keep you chortling long after the read is finished!
I received a free copy in a Goodreads Giveaway.
PS. We are Norsk.
I bought the audio on sale, and was disappointed in the narrator's cadence, boredom, and pronunciations.

4 people found this helpful

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Love Loss and Melancholy

Miller's book Norwegian By Night was published about 5 years ago and introduced the reader to the powerful character of 82 year old ex-marine Sheldon. This new entry in what appears to be a series picks up just days after the final scene of that first book. In American By Day, Miller continues to explore cultural divides, love, loss, family and most importantly memory.

For me, Sheldon is a tough act to follow and book one had a driving pace that used a complex mix of semi-confused elderly internal dialogue and flash back style memories to tell an edge of your seat story. Book two, to me, had a slower pace and a more circumspect point of view. Don't get me wrong, the characters in book two were easy to connect with, well developed, and believable. Miller tells a good story with another cross cultural adventure but be aware--it's just a little different in style.

I will be really interested in seeing where Miller takes the story in future books and to see more of Sigrid and Irv--both engaging characters. This book was filled with dry humor, deep insights about cultural conflicts within communities and the pitfalls of perspective in love and family. It's best to read book one in the series before starting this title as one builds on the other.

Recommended if you liked Norwegian By Night. I enjoyed this continued storyline and thought the narration was excellent.

18 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Book 2: Even better!

I really enjoyed "Norwegian by Night," so much that I bought this "spin-off" - hoping it might be almost as good. It wasn't- it was even better! Some sharp observations about American culture, humor, drama, great characters.

1 person found this helpful

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Expatriate views

I love character driven novels. I enjoyed Norwegian by Night. I could relate with Sheldon because I am an old man too who used to be in the military. The books give insights into being an American in Norway and being a Norwegian in America. Both Sheldon and Sigrid are clever, experienced in life, and highly educated. Both are opinionated and stubborn. Their ideas are interesting and they are often funny. It is my opinion that all of the characters in both books are super interesting.

There are basically two types of law abiding expatriates. One lives in a foreign country for whatever the reason (wife husband children etc.) and call it home. The other goes a step further and renounces their allegiance to their home country. The author is living in another country but retains his allegiance to America.

I am an American expatriate.. I, myself, am in the later category. I love both the country I live in and America. I love both cultures and people. It is impossible to live in another country and not compare it with your home country. It would be natural for someone to begin life in another country by using their home country as a standard of measurement that the foreign country needs to meet or imitate. As years go by you might begin to see the cracks as well as the beauty in your home country as compared to the foreign country you chose to live in.

Miller published this book in 2018. It was written before the racial eruption that is happening in America today.. I found his ideas on police brutality, the gun mentality and racial injustices to be very interesting.

I loved the book and I really enjoyed the narrator.. I look forward to the author's future books. I would very much recommend this book to others.

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Ugh! Pretty negative. Couldn't finish.

You know how you get around a guest at a dinner table who makes everyone uncomfortable by droning on and on with their political rants? This book turned into one of those situations. I adored Norwegian by Night. The characters were wonderful and sweet. In this story, what might have been clever witticism became just negativity! I honestly couldn’t finish the story. It isn’t just that the author has opinions. It’s that he bashes American everything relentlessly. If he doesn’t like his country, perhaps he might choose a cheerier topic to write about. Instead, it feels like you are being lectured about absolutely everything, in a very negative way, as if you are a naughty child for living here. I wish I had listened to the reviews and believed them. It’s hard for me to put down a book (or stop listening to one), but I couldn’t even bear it long enough to find out what happened.

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I love this author!

Another winner by Derek Miller. Funny, insightful, great character development, excellent narration.
Am anxiously awaiting his next novel.

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Excellent in every aspect

A truly wonderful novel with fully-realized, idiosyncratic characters. Thought-provoking and poignant, yet well-leavened with humor. Sean Mangan’s narration was terrific.