Title: The Disappeared
Author: Kristina Ohlsson
Review: It is not that the rich and powerful ever commit crimes; I am sure they do. It is just a vast majority of crimes are committed by the average, including murders. It has been an American crime fiction tendency that all murderers are serial killers; or the thought we would only enjoy it if the characters are super rich or powerful. I realize there are some fantastic exceptions to this generalization, but as a trend it is easy to spot. I bore of this trend and have found great solace in the crime fiction of Scandinavia. Its detectives, crimes, victims, and motives tend to be as bleak as their winter landscapes. Ordinary people committing ordinary crimes for the dumbest of reasons. This stark reality is doggedly tracked down to its roots by troubled yet determined detectives. It is an unsensationalized look into the reality of our lives. It is this unvarnished view of the worst of humanity that brings me back to Nordic Noir.
The Disappeared at its heart follows these principles and through the details our investigators are able to uncover the hidden, and expose the secrets to the harsh light of day. The procedural part of this story is fantastic and I applaud the author for another great work. I just did not enjoy the original crime and the conclusion. It is straying too much into the American school of crime fiction and find that worrisome.
The great news though, if you are a fan of the sensational found in contemporary crime fiction and are looking for a bridge step into the world of Nordic style, then this book is perfect for you. You get the over the top crime coupled with the gritty investigation. A wonderful baby step to whet your appetite.
Publisher: Emily Bestler Books
Copyright: 2011 (translated 2013)
Quick Review: 3.5 stars out of 5
Why I Read It: I have read the other books in the series and enjoy Nordic
crime fiction in general.
Where I Obtained the Book: Sent to me by the publisher for review
Synopsis: A young woman is found carved up and buried in a forest glade in a Stockholm suburb. She is identified as Rebecca Trolle, a student who went missing two years earlier. While Fredrika Bergman and her team try to find out why Rebecca met such a violent demise, more bodies are found in the same area. Fredrika Bergman is inevitably drawn into the case, but it becomes much more complicated when her lover’s name is mentioned in the investigation. The investigative unit are nearing a resolution, but the killer is still at large. One question remains: whose body will turn up next when the killer returns to the grave in the forest?
Author Biography: Kristina Ohlsson is a political scientist and until recently held the position of Counter-Terrorism Officer at OSCE (the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe). She has previously worked at the Swedish Security Service, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Swedish National Defense College, where she was a junior expert on the Middle East conflict and the foreign policy of the European Union. Kristina lives in Stockholm.