Another audiobook that it took me most of 2013 to get through (I wasn’t a quick audiobook listener – I listened to this on walking commutes and while gardening, but not much of the rest of the time). This wasn’t my first bit of Scandicrime, but definitely one of my first.
When an 8-year-old girl is found drowned in the harbour, fingers point very quickly at the autistic son of the girl’s neighbour; her grandmother and the neighbour have been fighting for years, and Markus saw Sarah on her last day. Local detective Patrik Hedstrom knows it’s not that easy, but between the gruesome nature of the crime, his newborn daughter’s incessant screaming and his wife’s crippling post-natal depression, he’s really struggling. Meanwhile in the parallel story, simple stone cutter Anders is forced to marry the spoilt daughter of the local business magnate after a romance gone wrong. No amount of love seems to be able to mellow Agnes.
This had all the necessary ingredients for a gripping thriller – plenty of well-developed characters with idiosyncracies, a bleak and cold setting, several turns for the worse, an unexpected death caused by incompetent policing… it really ticks all the boxes.
I had no idea this was part of a series and will, in time, look out for the others, but I don’t feel a need to go rushing out to find them.
I don’t really think the alternate story-line was necessary, it really just interrupted things and while it gave some background to the killer’s motive, it didn’t give enough motive to really justify including it.
Shout-out to the translator: it was very well translated. Enough local detail left to give us a very strong sense of setting, without it ever being incomprehensible. Also well narrated – slightly separated voices for the different characters made it much easier to keep track!
Additional infoAudiobook borrowed from a London library (not sure which one!) 16 hrs and 1 minute in length Order The Stone Cutter from Amazon* or Waterstones * this is an affiliate link – I will be paid a small percentage of your purchase price if you use this link, which goes towards give-aways and site hosting