More quality Scandi noir
Anne Holt came to my attention accidentally. BBC Four has recently been showing a Swedish TV adaptation of one of her later novels, Modus (originally published as Fear Not (Pengemannen))). I thoroughly enjoyed the series and then realised that I had an Anne Holt sitting on my To Be Read shelf - a cheap book buy from a garden centre.
Blind goddess (Blind gudinne) is the first in her series of novels about Norwegian detective, Hanne Wilhelmsen. The novel opens with a brutal murder in Oslo of a drug dealer and the discovery of a young man covered in blood who quickly becomes the chief and only suspect. By chance he ends up being defended by Karen Borg, who had originally found the body, and whose legal career is normally far removed from the dirty world of criminal advocacy.
Karen is also an old university friend, and lost love, of Hakon Sand, who (in an American crime novel) would be working for the DA's office. As Sand and Wilhelmsen investigate the crime they quickly realise that the crime is rooted deep in the highest levels of Norwegian society. Who can they trust? And how are they going to bring the guilty to justice?
There was so much that was good about this novel. Great characterisation especially of the good guys - Sand, Wilhelmsen and Borg all stood out.
|The Blind Goddess of Justice|
Hakon Sand was also very likeable, with many of the same attributes as Hanne; and the love story between him and Karen is rather endearing. (There's also a dog in the story - always a bonus for dog fans). The story was well constructed with some very clever red herrings being thrown across the reader's path. A thoroughly enjoyable, engrossing read, that gets to the dark heart of Nordic society. I look forward to reading much more in the Hanne Wilhelmsen series.