Detective Pia Kirchhoff is about to set off on a long-delayed honeymoon when she receives a phone call. An elderly woman has been shot and killed while walking her dog. A short while later, another murder is committed, and the modus operandi is eerily similar: A woman is killed by a bullet that smashes through her kitchen window - and in both cases the same weapon fired the shot. Two more murders follow in short order. None of the victims had enemies, and no one knows why they were singled out.
As fear of the Taunus Sniper grows among the local residents, pressure mounts on Detective Kirchhoff. She and her partner, Oliver von Bodenstein, search for a suspect who appears to murder at will, but as the investigation progresses, the officers uncover a human tragedy.
With a story ripped from the headlines, I Am Your Judge is tightly plotted and delivers surprise twists at every turn.
©2015 Nele Neuhaus. Translation © 2015 by Steven T. Murray (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Photographer, nature & water geek, music lover, book fiend.
I enjoyed the last Nele Neuhaus books enough to keep an eye out for new releases, but a few hours into this disappointing novel, I was reminded how- as much as I enjoyed the Bad Wolf, I remembered being disturbed by some cheesy dialogue and slipshod police work from our stars. This latest effort was surprisingly full of that. I'm giving three stars instead of two because I'm wondering if the translation was part of what went wrong. Language and cultural differences may be a partial culprit. That said, the poor police procedure from our heroes, the hackneyed way certain antagonists were written, the unusually high need to suspend disbelief (& often) and the overly dramatic narration of certain characters were just too much for me. I enjoy Neuhaus's storylines, but this potentially good story arc was just enough to keep me reading until the end, but with a growing irritation by the time I hit the finish line.
Avid reader. Constant Audible listener. Currently deep into foreign crime detective novels. Especially a fan of noire and police procedural.
If you can keep track of all the characters (some of the foreign, hyphenated names are tricky to remember), the pace, story and characterizations are wonderful. The author does not take refuge in the oh-so-typical gore so common in many current murder mysteries. Rather, she relies on the subtle suggestion of the pending horror of being punished for a mistake committed many years ago. A wonderful whodunit until the very end -- hang onto your hat and enjoy the ride!
I love books!
As with many authors writing a series, this author keeps improving with each one. Neuhaus fits in with the good Scandinavian crime writers. The plot was really creative and kept you guessing the entire book. The ending was different in how you expect a crime mystery to end. The book was good enough that i wanted to keep at it although it was long enough that you didn't want to do it in one sitting. I enjoyed learning about the organ transplant business although nefarious in this story.
The book did seem a bit too long. The serial killer is killing so many people that it got to be hard keeping all the characters straight. A more concise story would make it easier to keep straight. Not being from the Frankfurt, Germany area keeping all the cities and locations straight was problematic.
Still, all in all, I enjoyed the story and will look forward to book #5 in the series.
Blind listener reading everything, especially sf&f & mystery/thrillers, restricted to audio so picky where credits are spent #BooksRule
I truly think this book suffers from a less than satisfactory translation... The story is better than average, the mystery is an engaging one... Good characters, even if a couple are a little caricatured .. The narration is better than average, if a bit slow, and a tad melodramatic in a few instances... Better at 1.25 speed... Nice glimpes into social culture and mood of the area...Very well paced, w/ a nice ramp up to the 2nd half and last 3rd... Some very well conveyed feelings of discomfort and gruesomeness in the latter 1/4... But, parts fell flat and there were some obvious idiom and colloquial disconnects that caused me to stop and go ????? The previous books never caused this which makes me pretty certain the issue is one of translation rather than writing skill... Once I realized this and compensated the book really took off for me... Not as good as the previous two in the series, but a good story and read if you can get by the minor flaws...
Of the Nele Neuhaus audiobooks available in English, this has not been my favorite. I struggled to connect with the storyline. However Neuhaus stills employed her technique of slowly divulging information that keeps me listening until the end.
This was my least favorite of the series so far. Red herrings are typically well-used by Neuhaus, but too many of these red herrings were the result of poor police work rather than reasonable alternative options. Bad decisions by police and other characters moved the story forward (and back) rather than it being advanced by additional information.
I enjoy the characters and generally enjoy the series. But this book was at least a third longer than it needed to be, with no point to the meanderings of the author.
Make the book more on point.
Didn't really have one.
I'm a retired professor of geography. A few years ago my health deteriorated and I had to give up reading. Audiobooks are my life-saver.
Overall, I've given this book four stars, but with some reservations. The story is quite good and fairly clearly explains the nature of the central issue (I'm being deliberately vague so as to avoid a potential spoiler). However, there are very many characters, with some of them being so similar to others that the book can be quite confusing. Also, because the book is so long and the segments are up to 90 minutes in length, it's difficult to find the place you want to check back in order to verify a character or event. I wish the publisher had used the author's breaks in the story as the basis for segmentation. Having said all this, I have to end on a positive note: the narration is excellent.
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