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Unseen
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Scandinavian crime at its best and most commercial. For all fans of Henning Mankell.

About the Author

Mari Jungstedt has worked as a radio and television journalist for fourteen years. This is her debut novel, and the first in a series set on the island of Gotland off the coast of Sweden. She lives in Stockholm with her husband and two children. Her next novel, Unspoken, is now available from Doubleday.

Reviews

The murder of Helena Hillerstrom on the beach of Gotland seems related to a physical fight with her live-in boyfriend the night before-until within weeks two more women are brutally killed in the same fashion, their bodies left naked and slashed and their panties stuffed in their mouths. As the summer tourist trade on this Swedish island suffers as a result, Detective Superintendent Anders Knutas and his colleagues struggle to find connections among the victims while dealing with journalist Johan Berg, who's getting inside tips about the crimes. First novelist Jungstedt includes a romance and some red herrings, along with brief excerpts describing the perpetrator's actions and thoughts that enable the reader to solve the mystery just ahead of the authorities. Neither the issue of abuse, at the heart of the murders, nor the police-press relationship is explored at length, but Jungstedt fashions a solid, compellingly readable police procedural with a nicely rounded protagonist. The prose is not as fluid as that of Henning Mankell, to whom the publisher compares Jungstedt, but the potential is there. This first title in a new series is recommended for collections where foreign mysteries are popular. Jungstedt lives in Stockholm.-Michele Leber, Arlington, VA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Swedish journalist Jungstedt's first mystery, set on the island of Gotland, a popular tourist destination, opens with some promise. After a gathering of friends dissolves amid jealous accusations, the source of the conflict, Helena Hillerstrom, vanishes from her home, only to turn up the victim of a savage ax murder. This violent act shocks the residents of the normally sleepy resort island. Despite the dedicated efforts of Insp. Anders Knutas, the killer strikes twice again. The killer's cliched motive for these crimes and the police's failure to connect some obvious dots will disappoint those expecting another Henning Mankell. Still, the unusual setting is nicely described, and hopefully, later entries in the series will focus on issues that are particular to Sweden as this debut effort does not. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Just when I thought that the flow of impressive crime writers from the Nordic countries was slowing down, up pops another. Unseen is the Swede Mari Jungstedt's first novel, but it doesn't feel like it. She is in total control of plot and pace, conveys chilling atmosphere and her characters are well above average for believability. -- Marcel Berlins * The Times *
There is an icy dispassionate grip to Jungstedt's writing that recalls Henning Mankell. * Metro *

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