In Arne Dahl’s riveting follow-up to Misterioso, the Intercrime team is assigned the task of tracking down an American serial killer on the loose in Sweden - quietly, and as quickly as possible.
When a Swedish literary critic is found tortured to death in a janitor’s closet at Newark International Airport, the police realize that the murderer made off with the victim’s ticket and boarded a flight to Stockholm. Swedish authorities are placed on high alert, but the killer manages to slip through the customs dragnet and vanishes into the night.
With no clear motive in sight, Detectives Paul Hjelm and Kerstin Holm of Intercrime’s A-Unit take over the investigation. They learn that the method of torture used was not only a highly specialized means of extracting information secretly developed during the Vietnam War - allowing the victim to whisper, but not to scream - but also that it was the modus operandi of an allegedly deceased homicidal maniac known only as the Kentucky Killer.
As additional victims are discovered on the outskirts of Stockholm and the terror grows, the team finds itself coming up empty-handed. Hjelm and Holm fly to New York, hoping to discover both the killer’s identity and the source of his interest in Sweden. What they quickly learn, searching through the past, is that bad blood always comes back around.
©2013 Arne Dahl (P)2013 Random House Audio
International Praise for Arne Dahl and Bad Blood
“With dizzying speed Arne Dahl has climbed to the throne of Swedish crime literature. . . . His work is characterized by impartiality, lighthearted humor, epic flow, and poetic precision.” —Dagbladet Information (Denmark)
“One of this year’s most intense thrillers.” —GT (Sweden)
“A highly professional crime novel, and an insightful and thought-provoking social satire.” —Jyllands-Posten (Denmark)
“Bad Blood succeeds due to its clear motive and suspense. It expertly weaves together the American involvement in Vietnam with the current unfolding events in Iraq.” —Aftenposten (Norway)
Praise for Misterioso
“Terrific. . . . Full of twists and turns, blind alleys and sudden assaults, procedural hassles and stakeouts.” —The Providence Journal
“Absorbing . . . A dark, tense thriller.” —Newark Star-Ledger
“Dahl has created a brilliant character and a terrific story. This is a classic cop-shop tale of the old school.” —The Globe and Mail (Canada)
I've listened to a lots from the Scandinavian mystery genre and have enjoyed it. I suspect that the completion of the Jens Lapidus trilogy may be the apogee for my appreciation. One reviewer wrote that all other Scandinavian mysteries (e.g. procedural, suspense, modern detective, sad-sack but winsome drunk) are preparation for Lapidus who takes the familiar tropes to the limit.
It's possible that plots turning on transatlantic flights are worn out before they are written. Regardless, Bad Blood seemed like 'more of the same.'
In spite of weak material John Lee is always an excellent, soothing, and confident narrator.
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