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The Stonecutter (Fjällbacka Series #3)

( 36 )

Overview

The remote resort town of Fjällbacka has seen more than its share of tragedies, but a little girl found in a fisherman’s net may be the worst yet—especially when the postmortem reveals that this was a methodical murder, not an accidental drowning.

Local detective Patrik Hedstrom has just become a father, and it’s his grim task to discover who could have killed a child both he and his partner Erica knew well. He realizes that the solution lies ...

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The Stonecutter (Fjällbacka Series #3)

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Overview

The remote resort town of Fjällbacka has seen more than its share of tragedies, but a little girl found in a fisherman’s net may be the worst yet—especially when the postmortem reveals that this was a methodical murder, not an accidental drowning.

Local detective Patrik Hedstrom has just become a father, and it’s his grim task to discover who could have killed a child both he and his partner Erica knew well. He realizes that the solution lies with finding a motive for this terrible crime. Although Hedstrom is no stranger to the criminal mind, he couldn’t possibly predict how this case will reach into Fjällbacka’s darkest heart, spanning generations and ripping aside its idyllic façade, perhaps forever.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Audio
The extreme darkness of the human spirit—a quality that marks Läckberg’s novel and the work of many other Swedish crime writers—is expertly portrayed in this audio edition by narrator David Thorn, who previously read earlier installments in the author’s Patrik Hedstrom series. Although it may take listeners a few moments to become accustomed to Thorn’s British accent, this discrepancy quickly becomes a nonissue given the narrator’s deliberate pace, which serves to underscore the bleakness of both the external and the internal terrain. This time around, Hedstrom is particularly invested in solving the crime; as a new father, he’s affected by the murder of an eight-year-old girl even more strongly than usual. And Thorn is especially effective in portraying the detective’s exhaustion from tending to his infant daughter, which only adds to the strain of working the grisly murder case. A Pegasus hardcover. (May)
Washington Post
“One of those mysteries that ruin a vacation. Take it to the beach and your eyes will be so locked on its pages, you’ll never know there’s an ocean in front of you. . . . Richly textured and downright breathtaking.”
Washington Post
USA Today
“Equal parts atmospheric and suspenseful. It winds its way along two paths . . . that the two stories will eventually converge, with shocking consequences, is testament to Camilla Läckberg’s incomparable storytelling skills. If you have not yet read the equally entrancing The Ice Princess and The Preacher, what are you waiting for?”
USA Today
Library Bookwatch
“Narrator David Thorn distinguishes the bevy of characters and deftly pronounces their unfamiliar names.”
AudioFile
Bookreporter
“The extreme darkness of the human spirit—a quality that marks Läckberg’s novel and the work of many other Swedish crime writers—is expertly portrayed in this audio edition by narrator David Thorn, who previously read earlier installments in the author’s . . . series.”
Publishers Weekly
Booklist
The Stonecutter is one of those rare books that you will be unable to read fast enough, yet you also will want to savor slowly so you can delay the ending.”
Bookreporter
Dee's Book Blog
“Narrator David Thorn makes the Swedish names accessible in a way print does not. His tongue glides over the unfamiliar pronunciations, leaving the listener engaged in the story, which stretches back to the 1920s. Even the red herrings take you somewhere you need to go. . . . This is a must purchase.”
Library Journal
Chaos Is A Friend of Mine Blog
Thorn is a master of building and lessening suspense by altering pacing and inflections, allowing characters’ inner dialogues to clearly contrast with their spoken words. As the plot draws to a conclusion, Thorn outdoes himself voicing the murderer’s reactions to being caught, convicted, and imprisoned. Another winner from Läckberg.”
Booklist
From the Publisher
“[David Thorn] managed to maintain the continuity of the narration through-out and it was an easy listen.”
&#151Dee’s Book Blog

“Listening to the audio book was great fun. . . . I highly recommend . . . especially for fans of Nordic crime novels.”
—Chaos Is A Friend of Mine Blog

Booklist

Thorn is a master of building and lessening suspense by altering pacing and inflections, allowing characters’ inner dialogues to clearly contrast with their spoken words. As the plot draws to a conclusion, Thorn outdoes himself voicing the murderer’s reactions to being caught, convicted, and imprisoned. Another winner from Läckberg.”
Booklist

Library Bookwatch
“Smoothly performed by David Thorn. . . . Stonecutter is a gripping novel of the dark side of human nature, unforgettable to the very end.”
Library Bookwatch
Bookreporter
The Stonecutter is one of those rare books that you will be unable to read fast enough, yet you also will want to savor slowly so you can delay the ending.”
Bookreporter
Dee's Book Blog

“[David Thorn] managed to maintain the continuity of the narration through-out and it was an easy listen.”
&#151Dee’s Book Blog

Chaos Is A Friend of Mine Blog

“Listening to the audio book was great fun. . . . I highly recommend . . . especially for fans of Nordic crime novels.”
—Chaos Is A Friend of Mine Blog

Library Journal - Audio
The listener braces for a story of child abuse and pedophilia when a fisherman hauls up the body of a little girl along with his lobster pot. The dead girl, however, is not the central figure in this mystery, although Det. Patrick Hedstrom is desperate to solve the puzzle behind her death. He knew this child and has a daughter of his own. Narrator David Thorn makes the Swedish names accessible in a way print does not. His tongue glides over the unfamiliar pronunciations, leaving the listener engaged in the story, which stretches back to the 1920s. Even the red herrings take you somewhere you need to go. VERDICT With the popularity of all things Scandinavian, this is a must purchase. ["Readers of Läckberg's two previous books will not be disappointed. The author keeps the interest high in both story lines and ties the two together in a disturbing conclusion," read the review of the Pegasus hc, LJ Xpress Reviews, 4/13/12.—Ed.]—Jodi L. Israel, Birmingham, AL
Maureen Corrigan
…here's a young Swedish writer who's being hailed as "the Swedish Agatha Christie." Purists out there will snort in derision, but Camilla Lackberg is very, very good…if she keeps producing mysteries as richly textured and downright breathtaking as her latest, The Stonecutter, who knows? Maybe, one day, we might be identifying Agatha Christie as "the British Camilla Lackberg." The Stonecutter is one of those mysteries that ruin a vacation. Take it to the beach and your eyes will be so locked on its pages, you'll never even know there's an ocean in front of you.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
Läckberg’s excellent third novel set in the west coast village of Fjällbacka, like its predecessors The Ice Princess and The Preacher, strips conventional veneers from her achingly complex characters. Alternating parallel narratives embroil readers first in the present-day murder by drowning of little Sara Klinga, then in the rise and fall many decades earlier of Agnes Stjernkvist, a venomous schemer who lusts after honest stonecutter Anders Andersson. Investigating Sara’s death is series lead Det. Patrik Hedström, now an exhausted new father, whose partner, Erica, is suffering through a desperate postpartum depression. Läckberg gradually tightens the disparate narrative strands noose-like around her numerous remorselessly dissected characters, her signature reversal revealing shocking and poignant truths about the residents of Fjällbacka, where she herself was born. With at least nine more novels waiting for English translation and the Swedish TV series Fjällbacka Murders in the works, Läckberg has rapidly become one of the most profitable native authors in Sweden’s history. Agent: Joakim Hansson, Nordin Literary Agency. (May)
Entertainment Weekly
“Excellent. The end, when it comes, shocks like a dip in Swedish seawater.”
People
“Something's rotten in Fjallbacka, Sweden: Seven-year-old Sara Klinga's drowning turns out to be a murder, and mysterious woes soon befall other children. An eerie subplot about a local stonecutter's family secrets provides clues in this dark novel of revenge, estrangement and loveless marriages. It will keep you guessing.”
People Magazine
“Something's rotten in Fjallbacka, Sweden: Seven-year-old Sara Klinga's drowning turns out to be a murder, and mysterious woes soon befall other children. An eerie subplot about a local stonecutter's family secrets provides clues in this dark novel of revenge, estrangement and loveless marriages. It will keep you guessing.”
The Washington Post
“And,
speaking of Dame Agatha, here’s a young Swedish writer who’s being hailed as “the Swedish Agatha Christie.” Purists out there will snort in derision, but Camilla Lackberg is very, very good. Her domestic novels are outselling those of her late countryman Stieg Larsson, and if she keeps producing mysteries as richly textured and downright breathtaking as her latest, The Stonecutter, who knows? Maybe, one day, we might be identifying Agatha Christie as “the British Camilla Lackberg.” The Stonecutter is one of those mysteries that ruin a vacation. Take it to the beach and your eyes will be so locked on its pages, you’ll never even know there’s an ocean in front of you. ”— Maureen Corrigan
Ann Rule
“Fire and ice! Masterful suspense as compelling as secrets lying far beneath the dark sea. Läckberg is the perfect crime novelist who combines her gift for intriguingly complicated plots and a keen understanding of the ‘grotesques’ who live among us. Erotic and terrifying.”
Maureen Corrigan - The Washington Post
“And, speaking of Dame Agatha, here’s a young Swedish writer who’s being hailed as “the Swedish Agatha Christie.” Purists out there will snort in derision, but Camilla Lackberg is very, very good. Her domestic novels are outselling those of her late countryman Stieg Larsson, and if she keeps producing mysteries as richly textured and downright breathtaking as her latest, The Stonecutter, who knows? Maybe, one day, we might be identifying Agatha Christie as “the British Camilla Lackberg.” The Stonecutter is one of those mysteries that ruin a vacation. Take it to the beach and your eyes will be so locked on its pages, you’ll never even know there’s an ocean in front of you. ”
The Washington Post: "50 Notable Works of Fiction" - Maureen Corrigan
"This richly textured mystery about a spate of murders in a fishing village suggests that Lackberg may be the heir to Agatha Christie."
Library Journal
No wonder the Ikea furniture is so easy to assemble; it’s the Scandinavian writing. Direct + uncomplicated = male-friendly. Repetitive and S-L-O-W, this novel alternates between the assorted miseries of contemporary Fjällbacka, Sweden which includes a tragic drowning, and the assorted miseries of yesteryear Fjällbacka, Sweden, starting with the experiences of a titular stonecutter in 1923. Läckberg’s workmanlike characterizations reflect the stolid characters of Fjällbacka’s citizenry, like the new mom who feels like “…she was just two huge walking breasts” and who “…had never in her entire life felt so miserable, tired, angry, frustrated, and worn out….” Readers will soon find, however, that this is a 560 page assburner that alternates between ‘slow burn’ and ‘hopeless mess’ with a needlessly repetitive plot. The entire pathological mess has at its roots in a sexy, man-eating socialite named Agnes whose conniving heartlessness traces an ugly path to current day Fjällbacka, Sweden. There two dedicated policemen boil down a shitstorm of activity into four rather prosaic cases including a pedophile ring, a drowned girl, and someone feeding ashes to babies. While both story arcs are monotonous, the contemporary portion’s plentitude of characters often make it feel like a soap opera.

(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Reviews
Swedish publishing phenom Läckberg returns to the ill-starred town of Fjällbacka for another dose of resentment that festers into violence. Now that his live-in girlfriend, writer Erica Falck, has presented him with a child, Patrik Hedström ought to be finding a better balance between his personal and professional responsibilities. But his sympathies as both father and cop are demanded by the murder of Sara Klinga, the daughter of Erica's new friend Charlotte. Who would dump a seven-year-old near a wharf after drowning her, according to forensic evidence, in a bathtub? As Patrik surveys the wreckage of Sara's extended family, from the pathological philandering of Charlotte's husband, Dr. Niclas Klinga, to the unaccountable cruelty of Niclas' mother Lilian Florin, whose name Niclas rejected in favor of his wife's upon his marriage, Läckberg (The Ice Princess, 2010, etc.) parcels out hints of the tragedy's roots in the loveless marriage some 75 years ago between flirtatious heiress Agnes Stjernkvist and Anders Andersson, the stonecutter she'd captivated and planned to leave before her father discovered her pregnancy and forced the couple to wed. Meanwhile, back in the present, Patrik and his mostly incompetent colleagues on the Tanumshede police force focus their suspicions on imperious Lilian, who seems to loathe everyone but Stig, the bedridden husband she nurses so assiduously; Kaj Wiberg, the neighbor with whom she's long feuded over every pretext she can find; and Kaj's son Morgan, a computer game designer with Asperger's Syndrome who'd be poorly equipped to take the air even in a much sunnier spot than Fjällbacka. Yes, the detection is forgettable (Patrick solves the mystery by watching a similar case on TV) and the climactic revelation unsurprising. Läckberg's greatest strength is dramatizing the long shadows of family troubles that grow to monstrous size.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781615735501
  • Publisher: HighBridge Company
  • Publication date: 5/9/2012
  • Series: Fjällbacka Series , #3
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Unabridged; 17 hours
  • Pages: 1020
  • Sales rank: 1,301,042
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 5.74 (h) x 1.46 (d)

Meet the Author

CAMILLA LÄCKBERG graduated from Gothenburg University of Economics and moved to Stockholm, where she worked for a few years as an economist. A course in creative crime writing became the trigger to a drastic change of career. Her first four novels have all became Swedish number one bestsellers. She lives in a suburb of Stockholm.

DAVID THORN has narrated numerous works, one of which is an Audie® Award Finalist. Audiofile magazine has referred to him as “a masterful narrator,” noting “Thorn’s narration is precise and captivating.”

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 36 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(10)

4 Star

(12)

3 Star

(8)

2 Star

(3)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 36 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 18, 2011

    Great Book!

    ...and you can buy it on Amazon for 6 bucks. The asking price here is simply outrageous!

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 16, 2012

    Fast paced, not easy to figure out "who did it"!

    Fast paced, not easy to figure out "who did it"!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 28, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    An Inter­est­ing Read

    The Stone­cut­ter by Camilla Läck­berg is the third novel in the Fjall­backa mys­tery series. The series fea­tures police­man Patrik Hed­strom who works in a small town in Sweden.

    A fish­er­man at the small town of Fjall­backa pulls out the body of a small girl, she seems to have drowned but soon it is dis­cov­ered that it is not the case. Police offi­cer Patrik Hed­strom, a new father and friend of the girl’s par­ents, is put on the case. But Patrik dis­cov­ers a sin­is­ter side of this small town which is much more than he anticipated.

    It’s 1923, Agnes a stub­born, rich and spoiled got preg­nant by one of her father’s work­ers. When her father rejects her, Agnes sets in motion events which will have far reach­ing consequences.

    I chose to read The Stone­cut­ter by Camilla Läck­berg because I read one of her pre­vi­ous books, The Ice Princess, and enjoyed it. There is another book in the series called The Preacher which I have not yet read.

    This book has a dif­fer­ent struc­ture than the pre­vi­ous one I read, the story alter­nates between past and present, while the time shifts (at the begin­ning of every chap­ter and are not con­fus­ing one bit) have very lit­tle to do with the actual mys­tery, I felt that they do come together skill­fully at the end. I did find the book excit­ing, Ms. Läckberg’s growth as an author is evident.

    The author jug­gles many issues dur­ing the story. Some have much to do with the mys­tery, some are just to throw the reader off track, and oth­ers have absolutely noth­ing to do with the mys­tery but sim­ply intro­duce us to the char­ac­ters’ psy­che and allow growth.

    One of the side issues, one that has noth­ing to do with the story, is post­par­tum depres­sion which seems to affect many women in Fjall­backa. It seemed that the small town suf­fers from a case of post­par­tum depres­sion but I think that we, as a soci­ety, don’t rec­og­nize how many women this diag­no­sis. The Ms. Läck­berg does rec­og­nize the dif­fi­cul­ties of stay at home moms. Not only the hard work which goes into tak­ing care of a baby or a tod­dler, but also the lack of appre­ci­a­tion felt by soci­ety at large.

    Unbe­knownst to the reader, until prac­ti­cally the end of the story, the author spends a lot of time try­ing to diag­nose what lies behind evil. The inher­ent assump­tion is that peo­ple are made evil, not born (even though that is the case for some) and even if they do some­thing bad, in their mind, they can­not see what they did wrong. Per­son­ally I found this aspect of the book the most fas­ci­nat­ing and extremely well done, it had me think­ing about this issue for days afterwards.

    The descrip­tions of small town life in Swe­den are fas­ci­nat­ing and filled with imagery. Like any small town, together with the quaint liv­ing come small town prob­lems and pol­i­tics. Swedish soci­ety is also rep­re­sented in this book in all its glory and its dark&

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2012

    A real pageturner

    Loved how this book is written with the 1920's story mixed in with the present one. I enjoyed the character development and can only hope the next book is as good

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 19, 2012

    Good

    Well written and good plot - would like to rrad more•





    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2013

    Very far-fetched... That so many people lacking any sense, let a

    Very far-fetched... That so many people lacking any sense, let alone common sense, are gathered in the small community where Lackberg's novels take place is far from plausible. There are attacks on children and mothers have no qualms leaving their children out on a pram in front of a market, or in front of the door of their house (why?)... Incompetent policemen, headed by a delusional chief... Causes of crime reaching back decades... I would avoid it...

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 7, 2012

    Must-Read!

    Possible spoiler alert (as a fair disclaimer)
    I had read good reviews and thus obtained this as a Nook Book. I absolutely sped through it, it's definitely a page-turner! As it is somewhat inevitable that it has been compared to the Millennium trilogy, I have so say that as dark as it was, I didn't find it quite as harrowing and haunting as The Girl with The Dragon Tattoo, but that isn't to say it isn't dark and pretty disturbing on many levels all the same. The themes of motherhood in the novel - or parenting in general - will likely stick with me for some time.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 27, 2012

    Wonderful book

    Great crime novel and the writer (and translator) do an excellent job with theh characters. I have read another book by Ms. Lackberg and found it as good as this. This book was great!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 13, 2012

    Outstanding thriller.

    Outstanding thriller.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 1, 2012

    Excellent

    My only disappointent is that I have to wait for the nextone. Well developed characters; interesting plot line.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 7, 2014

    compelling

    I had not realized this was the third book in a series, but it still was an excellent read. Kept me up too late, several night. Lackberg does a good job of making you feel the atmosphere of a place you may never have been.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2014

    Spark Seeker's NEW Bio

    NAME: Spark Seeker AGE: 13 GENDER: Stallion TYPE: Earthpony COAT COLOR: Amber EYE COLOR: One blue and one gold MANE COLOR/STYLE: Red, yellow, and orge with blue tips. Spike up in mohawk TAIL COLOR/STYLE: Same colors as mane. Dr. Whoove's style PERSONALITY: Just meet him CRUSH: Meh MAREFRIEND: Nada TIMEZONE: Eastern CUTIE MARK: Ouroboros, the dragon thats eats its tail forever SIGGY: Spark or &Sigma&sigma

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 6, 2014

    My penis hurts!!!!!

    Llllllllllllooooooooolllllllllll

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2013

    Interesting, dark story

    Very thorough and filled with chilling details. Story is quite believable with unforgettable characters. When you finish her books you crave warmth and you feel as if you were part of the town where the story takes place. It makes you want to run as fast as you can and as far away from the place where such gruesome characters were brought to life.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2013

    This has to be the silliest book I have read in years. The whol

    This has to be the silliest book I have read in years. The whole thing is predictable and leads to you to conclude that life in Sweden is more negative than positive. While I appreciate realism, I also know from sixty years of existence that life is more balanced than portrayed in this book. I also know that police are not as dimwitted as portrayed in this book.

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  • Posted June 2, 2013

    Very good story

    I have read each of the Fjailbacka series and look forward to the new ones being planned. Lackberg is one of several excellent Swedish authors. I enjoy the way she has blended two stories that are taking place in different time periods. It is also fun to share in the evolution of the characters Erika and Patrik. Well written.

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  • Posted February 4, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I do a rotating display at the library on genres and authors. Th

    I do a rotating display at the library on genres and authors. This last month I featured Scandinavian authors. I've read many of the authors I featured, but Camilla Lackberg was new to me.

    The Stonecutter is the third book in her series set in Fjall­backa, Sweden that features Detective Patrik Hedstrom.

    A local fisherman hauling in his nets draws up an unexpected and grisly catch - the body of a young girl. When Patrik is called to the scene, he is horrified to realize he knows the girl. Further investigation reveals that the drowning was no accident.

    The present day chapters dealing with Patrik's investigation are alternated with chapters detailing a story beginning in 1923, set in the same village. The two narratives seemed to have no connection to each other whatsoever in the beginning, but I was fascinated by the older story as well. More and more of the past is revealed with every chapter and I started to get an inkling of where the two narratives might meet. I quite enjoyed having the story slowly but deliciously pieced together. Lackberg has done an excellent job with her plotting - it's intriguing and inventive.

    Although Patrik is the lead protagonist, there are other recurring characters that are just as well drawn and developed. Patrik's girlfriend Erica has just given birth to their first child and is having great difficulty coping. His colleagues at the station run the gamut - from keen to lazy to dangerous. The townsfolk are a mixed bunch - all with secrets it seems. I enjoy a series that lets us 'know' the characters and see their lives evolve from book to book.

    Lackberg's mystery is excellent, but I also appreciated the depth with which she explored the psyches of all involved - both police and suspects. The theme of relationships is explored in many forms - especially that of parent/child. These explorations were the most frightening parts of the book. There are sub plots never fully wrapped up as well, which was okay - the ending has only left me eager to read the next in the series - The Gallows Bird. A great read and a new addition to my list of must read mystery authors.

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  • Posted January 23, 2013

    this book was hard to read. it was way too long, too detailed, r

    this book was hard to read. it was way too long, too detailed, repetitive, and the plot was not all that good or clever. i do not recommend it for purchase. get it from the library. lackberg dragged this one out and not in a good way.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2012

    highly reccommended

    lackberg's writing is excellent

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  • Posted November 17, 2012

    I started this book as an audio book, but found it hard to keep

    I started this book as an audio book, but found it hard to keep up with the numerous characters and rapidly changing scenes. The e-book was easier to follow. The story could have been told with fewer secondary characters who did not play a role in the primary plot: solving the murder of a seven year old girl in a small town in Sweden. Recommended for crime drama fans.

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