Why did I get it: I couldn’t stop with just one book about Van Veeteren. (This book will count towards my Nordic Reading Challenge for 2011.)
How I would rate it: 3.5 out of 5 stars.
An ex-con is brutally murdered with an ax in Kaalbringen. Then the body of a wealthy real estate mogul is found, also the victim of a violent attack. There appears to be a serial killer on the loose, and Chief Inspector Van Veeteren is called in to help the local police. As details surrounding the grisly murders are collected, Van Veeteren finds little to go on. But then there’s another murder, and shortly thereafter one of Van Veeteren’s colleagues, a promising female detective, goes missing—perhaps because the criminal knows she has come too close to the truth…
Review: Borkmann’s Point was more enjoyable in some respects than Mind’s Eye and yet similar in others.
Simon Vance does a great job of making every voice different, and thank goodness because plot-wise, I had the same issues with this book as I did with the last. I enjoyed the journey, the introspective moments, and just the insight into different people, but I didn’t feel particularly overwhelmed with concern or worry. There just wasn’t a lot of suspense and spending the occasional scene in the company of the then nameless murderer made it pretty clear that not much else would happen. I also figured out who the Axe Man was simply because there were no actual suspects and only so many available characters.
Still, Håkan Nesser’s real strength is breathing life into fictional people and in this book he does it in spades. He has a real sympathy for the people he creates that I like and deeply admire. Besides, the best part of a mystery series is usually its main character and Van Veeteren could not be better. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter what he’s doing because his take on things and cynical, wry humor is so worth listening to and reading about. Similarly, I remain quite found of Munster who acts as sort of a Watson to Van Veeteren’s Sherlock Holmes. Both of them are really wonderful characters, and I am cannot wait to read whatever comes next.
In conclusion, another excellent performance from Simon Vance and another enjoyable book from Håkan Nesser.