The Van Veeteren detective series is based on the best-selling crimes novels by one of Sweden's most popular mystery writers, Håkan Nesser. Set in the fictitious city of Maardam, in a made-up country that could be anywhere in Northern Europe, the series follows the murder cases of retired chief inspector, Van Veeteren, and his two crime squad protégés, Münster and Moreno.
Following a clandestine meeting with his lover a man kills a young boy in a hit and run, but does not escape unseen. The ensuing blackmail drama claims further victims, including Van Veeteren's son, Erich.
Van Veteran's attempts to involve himself in the investigation put his relationship with Münster and Moreno under strain, especially as a picture of Erich begins to emerge that Van Veeteren refuses to accept. In the end Van Veeteren has to use himself as bait to lure the killer into the open.
The Swallow, The Cat, The Rose and Death
Münster comes across the strangled body of a young woman in her home and surprises the murderer who is still on the premises. Though the murderer escapes, a rare book is found at the scene with a dedication by the killer. When another victim is uncovered, Van Veeteren s literary expertise is put to the test as it becomes clear they are dealing with a serial murderer who kills using names taken from 19th century crime novels. Which name will he use for his next victim?
Van Veeteren's only unsolved case comes back to haunt him when the daughter of a murdered private detective comes to see him.
A brutal wife killer who went into hiding years before has resurfaced under an assumed name, or so it seems, and Van Veeteren has personal reasons for wanting him caught. Always one step ahead of his friends on the police force, Van Veeteren has to face the killer alone in a final twist that surprises even this master detective.
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If you thought Volume 1 showed some dark thoughts on the part of the main players, this volume and the three stories it contains takes Van Veeteren to a new and even darker level. I have never read the novels this series is derived from but the quality of these productions shows Van Veeteren as the cop who just can't stop being one (despite being retired) and a Police Force that really needs his input whether they like to admit or not. If you like your Nordic Noir with a twist, then this is for you. Case 6 (the final story) has a twist at the end so unexpected I didn't see it coming. Highly recommended for your collection. Will there be more, one hopes so!
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