The Deathwatch Beetle

Kjell Eriksson, trans. from the Swedish by Paul Norlen. Minotaur, $27.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-76616-8
Eriksson’s excellent ninth series mystery to be published in the U.S. takes Ann Lindell, who retired from the police force in 2020’s Night of the Fire, to the Swedish island of Gräsö, along with her “great love,” Edvard Risberg, for a vacation. Lindell’s investigative instincts click in when Gräsö native Cecilia Karlsson resurfaces after disappearing four years earlier—just after Cecilia’s boss, Casper Stefansson, went missing and is presumed dead. Cecilia, attractive, intelligent, and successful, provoked strong reactions from Casper and others, including her controlling father. She “saw herself as a victim... of the men who explained the world to her.” An indelible picture emerges of Cecilia’s world, her understandable anger, and her desire for change. Eriksson effectively portrays Sweden in the throes of change, being eroded from the inside out like the destructive insect of the title, while exploring social class, family, and, above all else, how men treat women. The plot slowly and steadily builds to a genuinely shocking denouement. Fans of literary fiction will be equally rewarded. Agent: Anneli Høier Copenhagen Literary Agency (Denmark). (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 08/19/2021
Release date: 11/16/2021
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
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