cover image The Dead of Summer

The Dead of Summer

Mari Jungstedt, trans. from the Swedish by Tiina Nunnally. Stockholm Text, $14.95 trade paper (336p) ISBN 978-91-87173-98-1

Add Jungstedt to the list of Scandinavian crime writers proficient at creating a dark mood for a complex whodunit featuring characters with genuine depth. In her fifth featuring Visby Det. Supt. Anders Knutas (after 2010’s The Killer’s Art), Karin Jacobsson, his newly promoted deputy, starts a complex inquiry into a murder committed while Knutas is on holiday. Peter Bovide, the owner of a small construction company, has been camping on the island of Faro with his wife and children. One morning, Bovide fails to return from his regular morning jog, and his bullet-ridden body, including multiple stomach shots after one to the head, turns up shortly afterward. The overkill suggests a personal motive for the killing, but none is easily detectible. Jungstedt has a talent for turning a phrase—the widow’s despair over her loss is so strong that “it actually made the air hard to breathe.” The twists perfectly combine surprise and logic. (Feb.)