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Böser Wolf: Der sechste Fall für…

Böser Wolf: Der sechste Fall für Bodenstein und Kirchhoff (original 2012; edition 2012)

by Nele Neuhaus

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1127107,804 (4.11)None
Title:Böser Wolf: Der sechste Fall für Bodenstein und Kirchhoff
Authors:Nele Neuhaus
Collections:Your library, Krimis, Read but unowned
Tags:Taunus, Mord

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Bad Wolf by Nele Neuhaus (2012)




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English (6)  German (1)  All languages (7)
Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
Sitting down to write this, my first thought was...where do I begin? This is one of the most compelling, affecting novels I've read & the characters & their stories continue to reside in my head. If you can finish this book & blithely pick up the next one on your reading list, you're made of stronger stuff than I.
This is the 6th in Neuhaus' Taunus series, featuring DS Pia Kirchhoff & her boss Chief DS Oliver von Bodenstein of the Kripo Criminal Police in a district of Frankfurt.. They've been through a lot together professionally & individually in their personal lives.
Pia has been living with Christoph for several months now & things are going better than she expected. He is a kind, gentle man, the perfect foil to balance the stress of her job. Oliver is starting to see the light at the end of his previously miserable life. After the acrimonious end of a long marriage, he's regained self confidence & is looking forward to moving into his own place & a renewed friendship with an old classmate.
It all begins when some drunk teens stumble over the body of a young woman lying in shallow water. When Pia & her crew arrive, they are horrified by her wounds. Dr Henning Kirchhoff's (Pia's ex) autopsy reveals a multitude of old injuries caused by years of abuse. It brings to mind an unsolved case from 9 years ago of another young girl found dead in similar circumstances. But none of them are prepared for the chain of events that will follow.
In a concurent side story, we meet Hanna Herzmann, an ambitious & successful TV journalist famous for her Jerry Springer style interviews. She's recently kicked out husband #4, her miserable, self absorbed daughter Meike is moving in for the summer & worst of all, she's in a ratings slump. Then her therapist summons her to a clandestine meeting with two men, a reformed biker named Bernd & Kilian Rothemund, a disgraced lawyer/convicted child molester. The story they tell her is chilling & unbelievable but may be the scoop of the year.
In serial interludes through the book, there are passages detailing the life of an anonymous child. She's a little girl who loves horses & is the apple of her father's eye. He spoils her, buying clothes like the funny red cape with a hood. She knows that she wore it for their "special times" together with his friends but strangely, all she can remember is being afraid of the big bad wolf.
Meanwhile, Emma (old high school chum of Pia's) is dealing with being hugely pregnant during the hottest summer in memory, an increasingly distant husband & strange, sudden behavioural changes in her young daughter.
There are 5-6 story lines that start independently but it's only as the author begins to skillfully weave them all together that we get an idea of the true scope of the plot. The cast of characters is large & well developed. Each has a distinctive voice as events unfold & the tension builds. But Neuhaus is a master of misdirection & as Pia uncovers all the secrets & lies, we too learn of hidden connections & identities. More than once, I was shocked to find out what I'd come to believe was completely wrong. There is a mounting sense of dread & while Pia in particular becomes a target, no character will emerge with the life they had before.
This is more than a police procedural involving multiple murders. Some of the subject matter is very disturbing but unfortunately, true to life. There are graphic descriptions of assaults involving adults but crimes committed against children are mostly alluded to & occur off the page. Your imagination will take over & you desperately want to see some of these people get what they deserve.
This is a riveting page turner you'll resent having to put down & I stayed up waaay too late finishing it. Yes, it's unsettling but so well written that you're quickly hooked & have to know how it all pans out. By the end, many aspects of the case are resolved but not all, leaving us to wonder if some of these characters will pop up in subsequent books. If you enjoy compelling, gritty & complex thrillers, this is for you ( )
  RowingRabbit | Sep 14, 2014 |
I have never read Snow White Must Die but I have wanted to. My favorite genre is mystery/suspense novels. I had not problems with this book being translated. I agree with another reader that there were so many character view points that it was hard to keep them all straight. Plus, I did not really think that all the different voices help add anything to the story. Because this is the sixth book in the series and the first that I have read, I have missed the growing relationship with Pia and Oliver. So to me there were just ok. Nothing real special about either one.

Although I do have to admit that this story was dark with the subject matter of child welfare and child pornography. In fact, the idea that drew me to this book with the bad wolf was an actual turn off for me. It was hard to read about an innocent child having to do the things the child did in this book. While, there was not gore in this book the details or hints of details about the subject matter was scary enough. I will still check out Snow White Must Die as I have heard this is the better book by this author. ( )
  Cherylk | Jun 24, 2014 |
Bad Wolf by Nele Neuhaus is the sixth book in her Bodenstein & Kirchhoff series and while I firmly enjoy reading detective series in order, I would not deter anyone new to Neuhaus’s writing from starting with Bad Wolf. Inspectors Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein find themselves on a rather disturbing case when first an unidentified girl is washed ashore in Frankfort, followed up with a second attack, this time of an investigator involved in uncovering a corrupt child welfare programme and potentially a child pornography ring which involves the elite. Bodenstein and Kirchoff find themselves delving into the rather disturbing past that will impact them far more than they can imagine. Neuhaus have cleverly created a disturbing yet brilliant multi-layered story to keep the reader not only interested but also unable to put the book down. I highly recommend Bad Wolf to those who enjoy detective series and well-written mystery and suspense. ( )
  knittingmomof3 | May 22, 2014 |
Publishers do both the author and their readers a disservice when they opt to translate series out of order. Snow White Must Die was the first book authored by Nele Neuhaus to be released in English with this, Big Bad Wolf, the second, but in the original German the titles are the 4th and 6th respectively and I’m irritated by the resultant gaps. While it is true that the cases the team investigates are resolved within the framework of a single novel, the characters personal stories are ongoing and the missing details do have an effect on my enjoyment of, and my attachment to, the series. @ Goodreads

With that rant out of my system…

As is Nuehaus’s habit, she begins Big Bad Wolf by introducing several seemingly unrelated characters and incidents, which slowly merge as the story unfolds. These include the discovery of a dead girl whose autopsy reveals signs of extensive and sustained abuse, an unscrupulous television host on the trail of a big story, a convicted pedophile on parole, a bikie gang leader, a woman worried about the changes in the behaviour of both her husband and daughter, and a vindictive Internal Affairs officer. As Chief Detective Inspector Pia Kirchoff and her partner, Detective Oliver von Bodenstein, investigate they begin to piece together the details of a horrific conspiracy which threatens to overwhelm them both.

With the large cast and multiple story threads, Big Bad Wolf can initially feel a little overcrowded and disjointed, but patience is eventually rewarded if you persevere. The story slowed for me around the middle, chiefly because I made the main connections very early and as such felt as if I was waiting for Pia and her team to catch up, but the shifts in character perspective ensures the pace rarely lags. The conclusion is tense and dramatic, but not as neat as may be expected.

Though rarely explicit, I found I had to put the book down at times and take a deep breath, finding some elements of the story emotionally distressing. Though the framework of this novel is fiction, it explores the horrifying reality of sexual violence against children and the extent of the network that trades in it.

Overall, I thought Big Bad Wolf to be an absorbing and satisfying police procedural, though the premise is challenging and may be difficult for some readers. The translation is skilful, I only wish I had the opportunity to read the fifth novel to eliminate the gaps in the development of Pia and Oliver’s character. ( )
  shelleyraec | Feb 3, 2014 |
I can see why this series is so popular in Germany. Kirchhoff and von Bodenstein are two interesting and layered characters that I enjoy learning more about. Neuhaus knows how to craft a very complex plot with many subplots that slowly combine for a satisfying conclusion, and the translation by Steven T. Murray is excellent. However, Minotaur Books is doing something that drives me crazy: they are publishing the books in this series out of order. English-speaking readers first became acquainted with Kirchhoff and von Bodenstein with the publication of Snow White Must Die, the fourth book. The next book available to us is this one, and Bad Wolf is the sixth book in the series. A lot depends on the personal lives of the characters and their developing relationships with each other. To have the books available out of sequence means that readers following the series may be a bit confused, as I was until I did a bit of research and found out that my memory wasn't at fault. The good news is, if Bad Wolf is your first experience with Neuhaus, this isn't going to affect you at all.

This was a difficult book for me to read due to the subject matter, and if you are the type of reader who doesn't care for books that contain violence towards women and children, I would advise you to stay away. The violence is not gratuitous, but it is disturbing.

Most of the time, I love mysteries that unfold slowly, but after reading two-thirds of the book, I found that not to be the case here. At times I felt there were too many subplots-- Pia's husband has a visiting granddaughter, Pia's pregnant friend is going through a very rough time in her marriage, von Bodenstein is ready to buy a new house and start a new chapter in his life, the unidentified young murder victim, the television host who barely survived her own attack, a convicted pedophile out on parole... and more. I didn't have the slightest bit of trouble keeping all the story lines and characters straight, but I began to wonder if they were all necessary. I think my reaction may have been due to the fact that I realized very early on what was happening, and I just wanted the "bad wolves" to be put out of business. Permanently.

Although I did have a problem or two with Bad Wolf, I still enjoyed it, and I'm looking forward to reading more in the series. Neuhaus has created some marvelous characters, and it's a pleasure to learn more about them. ( )
  cathyskye | Jan 26, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Nele Neuhausprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Grom, RobCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Murray, Steven T.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Er stellte die Einkaufstüte ab und verstaute seine Einkäufe in dem winzigen Kühlschrank.
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"On a hot June day the body of a sixteen-year-old girl washes up on a river bank outside of Frankfurt. She has been brutally murdered, but no one comes forward with any information as to her identity. Even weeks later, the local police have not been able to find out who she is. Then a new case comes in: A popular TV reporter is attacked, raped, and locked in the trunk of her own car. She survives, barely, and is able to supply certain hints to the police, having to do with her recent investigations into a child welfare organization and the potenial uncovering of a child pornography ring with members from the highest echelon of society. As the two cases collide, Inspectors Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein dig deep into the past and underneath the veneer of bourgeois society to come up against a terrible secret that is about to impact their personal lives as well. In Nele Neuhaus's second U.S. publication of her enormously popular series, tensions run high and a complex and unpredictable plot propels her characters forward at breakneck speed"--… (more)

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