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Echoes from the dead by Johan Theorin

Echoes from the dead (original 2007; edition 2008)

by Johan Theorin (Author), Marlaine Delargy (Translator)

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7035613,474 (3.8)15
Title:Echoes from the dead
Authors:Johan Theorin (Author)
Other authors:Marlaine Delargy (Translator)
Info:New York: Delacorte Press, 2008.
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, male author, swedish, sweden, crime, mystery, LT-arc, arc, delacorte press, random house, bookshelf17, read2009

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Echoes from the Dead by Johan Theorin (2007)


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» See also 15 mentions

English (41)  Dutch (5)  Swedish (4)  Danish (2)  French (2)  Norwegian (2)  Spanish (1)  All languages (57)
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
Just fantastic. An incredibly well-done mystery within an incredibly well-written novel. The plot was interesting and the mystery was difficult enough to not completely suss out but the characters and the settings were the real winners. I thought I would hate Julia and I spent a long time not warming to her but she was seemed a very real person and I really liked that about her. As one of the linchpins of the plot, she did seem to grow and change. Still fairly flawed but interesting. I loved the setting in an island off the coast of Sweden, I knew nothing about it but it felt like a very real place. The switching bewteen current and older plots was handled very well, I never felt pulled away from one to the other. Worth looking for more by this author.
  amyem58 | Jul 3, 2014 |
I just wish people will stop comparing all Scandinavian authors with Steig Larsson. A thriller based based in Oland, Sweden where a small child goes missing from an island, without a trace. Does that ring a bell? But well, the story, the narration, the outcome, the quality of writing, all differ from the Steig Larsson masterpiece. Not a bad read, but nothing commendable about the book either.

3/5 ( )
  PiyushC | Aug 23, 2013 |
*mild spoiler ahead*

A little boy disappears on a foggy day on the Swedish island of Öland. This book unravels the story of what has happened to him. We find out, but the solution to the mystery differs from our expectations.

I must agree with one of the other reviewers: the characters do have their flaws in the book. With that I don't mean real life flaws, but artificial flaws. In particular Gerlof and his friends are sometimes depicted as stupid secret wannabe detectives, even to their relatives.

Nils Kant, the sociopath, however, is well depicted.

What enamored me was the personal change Julia went through. For her returning and searching for the fate of her boy turns out to be a spiritual journey towards acceptance, healing and - I hate to say - maturity. She is able to find redemption at the end of the book.

A few times Theorin tries to rev up the suspension by switching story lines. That's nothing new, but in this book he uses this in the wrong way. He switches twice from a dramatic occurrence to a boring description of something hardly interesting for the development of the story.

The end of the story is mildly surprising as to why the boy disappeared. In these cases the revelations often follow too hasty. That's no problem for a fast paced book, but This book isn't, so unraveling the truth should follow the same pace.

Engrossing, nevertheless, and great depiction of the isolation of Öland and desolation of the alvar. ( )
  jeroenvandorp | May 22, 2013 |
s ( )
  jan.fleming | May 2, 2013 |
I read Echoes from the Dead as my third book for The Great Transworld Crime Caper. I hadn't heard of Johan Theorin before seeing the book on the list for the challenge, but the synopsis sounded intriguing and the fact that it won the CWA Best First Crime Novel in 2009 encouraged me to make it one of my picks.

The book is set on the Swedish island of Öland, Julia left after the disappearance of Jens, her son, twenty years ago but Gerlof, her father, has remained on the island. When he receives what he thinks is Jens' shoe Julia returns and the two of them get involved in trying to solve the case. Whilst this is going on there is a secondary plot featuring Nils Kant, Gerlof's main suspect. This tells the story of how a young boy grows up to become a man feared by the island, capable of murder.

I have to admit I didn't really like many of the characters in the book. I found them hard to identify with and as a result didn't really feel invested in their stories. Gerlof in particular infuriated me, his habit of keeping secrets made me want to shake him on a number of occasions. I did find Julia to be a well created character, and maybe if I was a parent I would have been able to identify with her more - I certainly saw similarities between her and a family member who lost a child.

I did really like the way the two story lines wove around one another. Nils' storyline was probably more interesting, but I did find that I'd predicted virtually the whole last section of his story, along with the main story. As I've already said I didn't find the characters easy to engage with and so I did at times find it hard to keep going with the book.

I'm really sad to have ended my challenge with a book I didn't enjoy very much. I think it's probably more to do with the fact that I wasn't the right audience for the book than anything else. ( )
  juniperjungle | Apr 16, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (6 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Johan Theorinprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bang, KarinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bolstad, KariTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bree, Corry vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cangemi, LauraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cassaigne, RémiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Delargy, MarlaineTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dobosi, BeátaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kejia, XinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Menna, OutiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Misumi, KazuyoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schöps, KerstinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Topczewska, AnnaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Valle, Carlos DelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To the Gerloffson family, Oland.
First words
The wall was built of big, rounded stones covered in grayish lichen, and it was the same height as the boy.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
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Book description
On a gray September day, on an island off the coast of Sweden, six-year-old Jens Davidsson ventured out of his backyard, walked out into a fog, and vanished. Now twenty years have passed, and in this magnificent debut novel of suspense — a runaway bestseller in Sweden — the boy’s mother returns to the place where her son disappeared, drawn by a chilling package sent in the mail. In it, lovingly wrapped, is one of Jens’ sandals — sandals Julia Davidsson put on her son’s feet that very last morning. Now, with only a handful of clues, Julia and her father are questioning islanders who were present the day Jens vanished — and making a shocking connection to Öland’s most notorious murder case: the killing spree of a wealthy young man who fled the island and died years before Jens was even born. Suddenly the island that once seemed so achingly familiar turns strange and dangerous. Until Julia finds herself facing truths she never imagined — about what really happened on that September day twenty years ago, about who may have crossed paths with little Jens in the fog, and how a child could truly vanish without a trace ... until now.
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No descriptions found.

Twenty years after Jens disappeared without a trace from the island of Oland, a package is mailed to the boy's grandfather that contains the worn and mended shoe of a child, prompting the grandfather to contact the child's mother, resume the hunt for the boy, and make a shocking connection between Jens's disappearance and the island's most notorious murder case.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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