Published May 3rd Harper Collins
A stranger wearing a mask stands in the shadow of a garden. He’s watching his first victim through the window. He will kill slowly, make it last – play him a nursery rhyme – make him pay.
There’s only one person the police can turn to – ex Detective Joona Linna – but he’s serving time in a high-security prison. So they offer him a chance to secure his freedom: help Superintendent Saga Bauer track down the vicious killer known as the Rabbit Hunter, before he strikes again.
Soon another three victim have been murdered and Stockholm is in the grip of terror. Joona Linna must catch a disturbed predator, whose trail of destruction leads back to one horrific night of violence – with consequences more terrifying than anyone could have imagined…
First my thanks must go to Katy Blott at Harper Collins for correctly assuming this was a book I might like, thinking it may be my thing. She was absolutely spot on, yes! I loved it!
The sixth in a series (I know right!) plus, the first book; The Hypnotist was a Richard and Judy 2012 Book Club choice – whenever I’m not sure what to read next (which isn’t often) I check out the Richard and Judy Book Club for a guaranteed great read. So yes, Lars Kepler and his creation, Joona Linna passed be by. Did it matter, I hear you ask…starting on book 6? I don’t think so, not hugely. There were a few things I didn’t know, still don’t in fact, but they didn’t affect my reading experience, so yes, this works as a standalone in my opinion.
At 460 pages I was surprised how quick a read this was, a comprehensive and detailed crime story that packs a lot in. Short chapters make it highly readable. Told from several points of view, the story was fast paced as the pressure is on to catch the killer. With a high profile first murder, terrorism is thought to be key and the story zooms off in one direction before further intelligence emerges taking the plot in a different, more sinister direction entirely. The significance of the mask, the nursery rhyme and the 19 minutes is revealed as we discover the motivations of the killer, and trust me at times this is one creepy read, with revenge at its core, not for the faint hearted!
I was impressed with the writing because although dense and with a number of characters and plot lines, I found myself quickly engaged with both the characters and the story making the plot easy to follow. This is true Scandi Noir, at its best, with the familiar grittiness of the crime fiction in this genre. An incredibly satisfying read that continues to the last page where everything comes together, although that said I see book 7 on the horizon I think!
A superb read, highly recommended from me for fans of intricate crime fiction with a great protagonist in the endearing Joona Linna.
Happy Publication – The Rabbit Hunter by Lars Kepler.