December 2018 Orion Books
FOR THE MISSING is the award-winning, globally bestselling Swedish crime debut from Lina Bengtsdotter about a missing girl, and the detective who must return home and confront her darkest secrets in order to find her.
Nora’s daughter Annabelle has disappeared, last seen on her way home from a party.
Gullspang’s inexperienced police are wilting under the national media spotlight – and its residents are desperate for answers.
THE CLOCK IS TICKING
Stockholm DI Charlie Lager must return home to find Annabelle, and then get out of town as soon as she can. Before everyone discovers the truth about her…
For DI Charlie Lager returning to her home town of Gullspang is not something she relishes. With a dark history that she would prefer to leave deep in the past, Charlie has moved on from this small town of her childhood and has no desire to go back. But a teenage girl is missing and the local police investigation has stalled and DI Lager and her partner Anders Bratt are sent to assist.
On the surface this is a search for a missing girl, capturing all the small town vibes – the vague hostility of the local police, not appreciating the need for help from the big city detectives, and the locals; folk who have lived in the town since Charlie’s childhood, work at the factory and drink in the bar, power dynamics are in play and there are secrets and lies aplenty.
But in this layered story we learn more about Charlie, her childhood and her complicated relationship with her mother. Interspersed with the story are chronological accounts from that day – the day Annabelle didn’t come home, tracking Annabelle’s movements and painting a broader picture of the missing girl. Also interspersed throughout the book is the story of 2 girls, it wasn’t clear where their story fitted in so this added a layer of intrigue – I certainly didn’t work this out until much before the end.
I enjoyed this book a lot, set in a dark, small town it was an atmospheric read stilted in mystery – what had happened to the girl? Among the townsfolk there were plenty of suspects and unsavoury characters. What was Charlie’s story – a tricky character herself but a determined police investigator and where did the 2 girls fit in? this book kept me guessing. It was an engaging read, the characters were memorable and the plot was easy to follow. A great debut novel with strong characters and equally strong plot. Certainly recommended by me.
Author and Translator
Lina Bengtsdotter grew up in Gullspang, Sweden. She is a teacher in Swedish and Psychology and has published a number of short stories in various newspapers and magazines in Sweden and the Nordic countries. She has lived in the UK and in Italy and today resides outside of Stockholm with her three children. FOR THE MISSING is her debut novel.
Agnes Broome is a literary translator and Preceptor in Scandinavian at Harvard University. With a PhD in Translation Studies, her translations include August Prize-winner THE EXPEDITION by Ben Uusma
This is a blogtour so please do check out the other stops on the tour and see what others think of this book and share lots on social media! Thank you to Tracey Fenton for inviting me to be part of this blog tour and Orion Books for sending me a copy of thebook.