01 January 2001

Crime Book Log: Nesbø, Connolly, Coben, Lackberg

With Easter approaching, some of writing big guns are cranking out product. Big product. Here are some shiny new hardbacks that are coming out on Thursday.

Polite Notice: If you’ve stumbled across this page in 2018 you may find these books have been out a long time, and are available in paperback. You may even have read some of them already.

The SonJo Nesbø. He’s good, isn’t he, with his hugely-successful Harry Hole thrillers and his terse titles like The Snowman, The Leopard and The Bat. His new one is called The Son.

The blurb just can’t make up its mind about capitalization:


Sonny is a model prisoner. He listens to the confessions of other inmates, and absolves them of their sins.


But then one prisoner’s confession changes everything. He knows something about Sonny’s disgraced father.


He needs to break out of prison and make those responsible pay for their crimes.


The Wolf In WinterIrish writer John Connolly’s first genre bending Charlie Parker novel was published in 1999. He’s now on the twelfth, called The Wolf In Winter. Parker is a private investigator who frequently butts heads with supernatural forces.

The blurb avoids local shops for local people:

Prosperous, and the secret that it hides beneath its ruins . . .

The community of Prosperous, Maine has always thrived when others have suffered. Its inhabitants are wealthy, its children’s future secure. It shuns outsiders. It guards its own. And at the heart of Prosperous lie the ruins of an ancient church, transported stone by stone from England centuries earlier by the founders of the town…

But the death of a homeless man and the disappearance of his daughter draw the haunted, lethal private investigator Charlie Parker to Prosperous. Parker is a dangerous man, driven by compassion, by rage, and by the desire for vengeance. In him the town and its protectors sense a threat graver than any they have faced in their long history, and in the comfortable, sheltered inhabitants of a small Maine town, Parker will encounter his most vicious opponents yet.

Charlie Parker has been marked to die so that Prosperous may survive.

Missing YouOoh, look, there’s a new Harlan Coben out. Missing You is available in hardback and on Kindle. Coben is the writer of the Myron Bolitar novels, but it’s his stand alones that really generate heat. Coben’s books are usually about Ordinary Joes who discover their loved ones have been hiding important stuff from them.

The blurb is just popping out for a bit:

It’s a profile, like all the others on the online dating site. But as NYPD Detective Kat Donovan focuses on the accompanying picture, she feels her whole world explode, as emotions she’s ignored for decades come crashing down on her. Staring back at her is her ex-fiancé Jeff, the man who shattered her heart eighteen years ago.

Kat feels a spark, wondering if this might be the moment when past tragedies recede and a new world opens up to her. But when she reaches out to the man in the profile, her reawakened hope quickly darkens into suspicion and then terror as an unspeakable conspiracy comes to light, in which monsters prey upon the most vulnerable.

As Kat’s hope for a second chance with Jeff grows more and more elusive, she is consumed by an investigation that challenges her feelings about everyone she ever loved - her former fiancé, her mother, and even her father, whose cruel murder so long ago has never been fully explained. With lives on the line, including her own, Kat must venture deeper into the darkness than she ever has before, and discover if she has the strength to survive what she finds there.

There was that rather good French movie of One False Move - if you haven’t seen it, you really should - and it looks like a US movie version is finally going to happen. Coben likes his plot-twists – don’t we all? – and talks about those and about his writing in this interesting interview.

Buried AngelsCamilla Lackberg is described as a Swedish Sensation. I’m sorry, I’m sure Camilla’s terrific, but the role of Swedish Sensation will always be reserved for Agnetha Fältskog. I’m guessing Agnetha’s not much of a crime writer though.

Camilla’s new book – hardback, kindle – sees the return of Hedstrom and Falck and is called Buried Angels.

And it has an Eastery vibe, as the blurb immediately clarifies!

Easter 1974. A family vanishes from their home on an idyllic island off the Swedish coast. They have left everything behind – including their one-year-old daughter, Ebba.

Now, years later, Ebba has returned to the island. She and her husband have suffered the loss of their only child and are looking to make a fresh start. But within days, their house is the target of an arson attack.


Detective Patrik Hedstrom takes on the investigation, aided by his wife, crime writer Erica Falck, who has always been fascinated by the mystery of Ebba’s abandonment and the family’s tragic history.

When dried blood is found under the floorboards of the old house, it seems that the cold case involving the missing family is about to be brought back to life. And soon, Patrik and Erica are consumed by the hunt for a killer who will stop at nothing to keep the past buried…

A former economist, Camilla wrote her first story at the age of four, in which Santa’s wife is beaten to death. Now that’s a crime writer.