cover image The Considerate Killer

The Considerate Killer

Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis, trans. from the Danish by Elisabeth Dyssegaard. Soho Crime, $27.95 (320p) ISBN 978-1-61695-528-1

At the start of Danish authors Kaaberbøl and Friis’s uneven fourth and final thriller featuring Red Cross nurse Nina Borg (after 2013’s Death of a Nightingale), an assailant apologizes after hitting Nina with a tire iron in a shopping mall parking garage, leaving her with a fractured skull. When the would-be killer sends flowers and Bible verses to her hospital room in Viborg, Nina and her new paramour, police officer Søren Kirkegard (no relation to philosopher Søren Kierkegaard), link him to a medical student she met in the Philippines, where she went on vacation five months earlier in a last-ditch effort to save her marriage. The plot drags at times, and the broadly drawn Filipino characters fail to transcend cardboard heroes and villains. The authors are at their best when they explore Nina’s confrontations with mortality—her own, her mother’s, her children’s, and Søren’s—and the effects of her often-dangerous choices on those she loves. Series fans will enjoy watching her relationship with Søren develop and deepen. (Mar.)