The Hanging by Lotte and Soren Hammer

 

I will admit that I basically gave up and skimmed to the end of this book.  I really do enjoy Nordic crime fiction but this just did not work for me on a number of levels.

The characters were not fully developed and seemed rather flat to me.  This, however, was not the main problem.  The writers are a Danish brother and sister and I’m assuming they are not native English speakers.  I do not know if they wrote the book in English or simply had a sub-par translator.  The dialogue was often stilted and not natural at all.  There was odd phrasing and strange idioms, all things a competent translator would have ironed out.  These oddities kept pulling me out of the story and  ultimately made it not work for me.

I will also say that this book was less a crime thriller and more of a political statement on the  child abuse laws, regulation of pedophiles and vigilantism, but it didn’t really do that either, at least not to the extent that I came away with a good grasp of what was happening with their laws or public policies.

To give a shortened version, the book opens with a harrowing scene of children finding men’s mutilated bodies hanging in the gym of their school.  Very early on we meet the “lead” culprit and then discover that the victims were all pedophiles and this was an organized effort by a group to punish them and draw attention to the issue of child abuse.  The book then meanders on from that point with the reader already knowing basically “who did it” and why and the rest of it was some issues with the press, concerns of a lack of public support for punishing the killers, and police procedural drills.

Disappointing read.

 

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Sundays in Bed with…Paradise Fields by Katie Fforde

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This is a meme hosted by Midnightbookgirl.com found here.  I hope this is running this week, I just have gotten used to looking forward to doing it.

Feeling very decadent this morning as I actually did not get up and go run or the gym as scheduled, this compounded by the bad diet choices yesterday is not a good thing:(  But I did get much reading done 🙂

Yesterday I read two amazing thrillers by S.J. Bolton see posts here and here, that led me to change up the pace this morning by reading the very lovely Katie Fforde’s very lovely book Paradise Fields.

I have read several of Katie Fforde’s books and have enjoyed them all.  This one was no exception, the main character Nel is a widow kept busy by the needs of 3 children, 2 in university and one about to go and her dogs and her “good works” on behalf of a children’s hospice and organizing a farmer’s market, all in addition to keeping up with a nice group of friends and a rather unexciting boyfriend.  When the hospice’s future becomes uncertain, Nel rises to the challenge.

I love how the author draws her characters, they are so real, so ordinary, you can picture sitting at the kitchen table with them and having a chat.  Nel isn’t perfect, she doesn’t leave the house perfectly turned out to run errands, she doesn’t keep her pets off the furniture, she doesn’t turn out a 3 course meal for 10 and then immediately hop up and do all the dishes by hand, in short she lives an “every woman” life.  As a reader, I felt immersed in Nel’s life and her concerns.

Very good romance with enough tension about how things will turn out to keep me turning the pages.  I highly recommend this book to romance readers.