The Lake

The Danish sister-and-brother duo Lotte and Søren Hammer (The Vanished) has created characters and smart plots that lend themselves beautifully to the police procedural. The Lake, fourth in the series featuring Detective Superintendent Konrad Simonsen, focuses on the unsolved murder of an unidentified young woman.

No great police effort or public concern was initially expended on the case, as the victim was a Nigerian immigrant. But all hell breaks loose after a chief constable publicly uses a racial slur to describe the woman. Mounting pressure for justice results in the assignment of the case to Simonsen's crew.

Clues are scarce, leaving the unit with their contacts, powers of observation, dogged determination and experience to dig up a suspect. On the other side of the case is an ambitious crime family with their own fermenting issues coming to a head. The Lake opens with the woman's death almost a year prior, offering full view of the case from both sides of the law from start to finish.

Scandinavian thrillers are often described as cold, harsh and violent, terms that are not unfair or even unwelcome in crime fiction. Along with the unforgiving landscape and local sensibilities, stories melding these elements have created their own fingerprint on the genre. The Hammers bring their distinctive spin to the formula, ratcheting the camaraderie and humor, and lending some compelling warmth to the mix. Their well-rounded characters are as much a draw to this fine series as their plots. --Lauren O'Brien of Malcolm Avenue Review

Powered by: Xtenit