cover image Killer Deal

Killer Deal

Sofie Sarenbrant, trans. from the Swedish by Paul Norlén. Stockholm Text, $16.95 trade paper (448p) ISBN 978-91-7547-197-6

Sarenbrant makes her English-language debut with her third Det. Emma Sköld police procedural, which highlights the perils of sexual liberation for Swedish women, as well as the stresses of balancing professional demands with personal needs, the often obtuse police system, and most painful of all, domestic abuse. Emma, who feels her police job is her identity, investigates the killing of a well-to-do Stockholm businessman, whose wife, Cornelia Göransson, whom he used to beat, has been wrongly arrested for his murder. Pregnant by her new lover, Emma must also deal with being stalked by her deranged former lover. Meanwhile, Emma’s sister, who is Cornelia’s only confidant, learns that her husband is having an affair. Harrowing scenes of the three women’s various trials in the context of contemporary real estate maneuvers, alternating with the first-person reflections of a psychopathic killer, make this an absorbing addition to Sweden’s fictional portraits of a welfare-state society gone hopelessly wrong, despite its weak ending. (May)