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Publisher's Summary

A girl's body lies, posed, on the pale sand of a Hamburg beach, a message concealed in her hand: "I have been underground, and now it is time for me to return home."

Four days later, a man and a woman are found deep in woodland, their throats slashed, the names "Hansel" and "Gretel" written on slips of paper pressed into their hands. As Jan Fabel, of the Hamburg murder squad, interprets this twisted imagery, it becomes clear that each new crime is a grisly reference to folk stories collected by the Brothers Grimm. The hunt is on for a serial killer who is exploring the darkest, most fundamental fears hidden in ancient fairy tales.

©2006 Craig Russell; (P)2006 Isis Publishing Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • LINZI
  • Perth, Australia
  • 02-21-12

So good - but soooo Nasty!!<br />

I loved this one. As grim as the fairytales themselves. The narration is perfect and really sets the tone. Turn out the lights, curl up by the fire and prepare for a curiously German scary bedtime story.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Robert
  • 08-22-08

Looking forward to the next installment..

This is the second Fabel book from the series that I have listened too, after The Blood Eagle. It was great that the old characters have been carried over to this later version, but nicely done so that the book is a story in its own right and not reliant on previous reading.

The story in cleverly told with the plot having a refreshingly good balance of being both unpredictable and believable. I can't wait for the next installment.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • John
  • 01-11-10

Brother Grimm

Thought it would be a struggle to find someone to compete with Steig Larsonn but Craig Russell is very close. Well constructed and believable key characters.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • David
  • 05-25-08

Brilliant

I really enjoyed this book - the 2nd of Craig's I've read. Really good' great story and well paced. Good stuff

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • keiko
  • 12-23-12

brilliant author

i found this book well written and well constructed. Craig Russell has been a good find,as in all his books so far he hasn't let me down. i must be honest and say i prefer the Flavel series over the Glasgow but having said that both are very good. he is definitely on my favourite author list. Sean Barrett as narrator is excellent.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Nigel
  • 08-16-10

Almost Better than Blood Eagle

After thoroughly enjoying Blood Eagle I continued on with the second title. Craig Russell continues to build on the characters from the 1st book with a very well done thriller! It had me guessing until the end. Recommended if you enjoyed his first book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Revmama
  • 05-14-16

fascinating

enjoyed this. narrator excellent as always with Barrett. storyline moved along well and held attention. love the breath of fresh air that is a detective with no booze problem. ..no relationship hassles...no deep dark hang ups and issues that make him a complicated complex character with horrendous background experiences. just a "normal" guy doing a job. ...makes a nice change from my recent reads. . ..well done Mr. Russell...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Steve
  • 09-10-15

Cracking Story!

This was a very good story, excellently read by Sean Barrett.
I previously listened to 'A Fear of Dark Water' and liked it very much but I didn't realise it was part of a series, so I tried this earlier book and was just as impressed this time around.
Jan Fabel is a good character to follow through these pages of horrific murders, police investigations, raids and the odd red herring; there are a couple of over the top moments, but for the most part, this was a very enjoyable book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • PPod
  • 04-16-14

Can smell the baking

I revisited this book and enjoyed it just as much. The combination of the story and narration evoked the smells of baking and hot sugar.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Simon1971
  • 01-25-18

Gruesome Fairy Tale

The second story in the Jan Fabel series takes on a journey with a fairy tale inspired serial killer.

Works stand alone but better of read in the series.

Sean Barrett is a brilliant narrator - without doubt the best of all. This story shows his wealth of accents beautifully.

Heartily recommended to all those who enjoy a gruesome murder mystery. And rhere’s more in the series to enjoy.

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  • Montees
  • 04-09-17

Crumbs! Brilliant Book...

The fella Russell does it again, aided ny the fantastic portrayal of "the book-reader". You know who he is!
Top notch again, thank you.
Ian