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Detective Inspector Huss by Helene Tursten
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Detective Inspector Huss (original 1998; edition 2004)

by Helene Tursten, Steven T. Murray (Translator)

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4421823,705 (3.71)22
Member:Denise54
Title:Detective Inspector Huss
Authors:Helene Tursten
Other authors:Steven T. Murray (Translator)
Info:Soho Crime (2004), Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
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Detective Inspector Huss by Helene Tursten (1998)

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English (15)  Danish (1)  Dutch (1)  German (1)  All languages (18)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
First novel introducing the Violent Crime unit of Goteborg and Detective Inspector Irene Huss. Almost four stars. The plot is a little confusing and takes the long, long, long way to resolve itself but Tursten introduces all of the member of the unit in due time and it's integrated into the plot. The pace is a little clunky, a little "brouillon" but she sets the bases for an intriguing case and quite a few more to come. ( )
  writerlibrarian | Apr 7, 2013 |
When wealthy Swedish businessman Richard von Knecht falls to his death from his apartment balcony everyone assumes it is suicide. Naturally enough for a mystery novel there is soon evidence that leads police to believe von Knecht was actually murdered and they begin the slow process of unravelling which secrets of his life might have led to his murder.

And so we meet the members Göteburg Violent Crimes squad as they start interviewing von Knecht’s family members, neighbours and friends to uncover who might have had the motive and opportunity to commit the crime. The team is a large one led by Detective Superintendent Sven Andersson who is shown, as the book progresses, to be intelligent and supportive of his own staff, though he struggles to know how to handle emotionally charged situations and can’t seem to quite fathom how to deal with the women on his team. At times I wanted to give him a good slap but I found him very believable and ultimately sympathetic.

Among the seven Detective Inspectors on the team is Irene Huss, a middle-aged married woman with twin teenage daughters and a refreshingly supportive husband. We see her struggle with a truly scary situation as a parent alongside both frustrating and frightening situations at work and in all instances her behaviour and reactions seem entirely credible. The rest of the team is an interesting mixture of new and old colleagues including Irene’s good friend Tommy whom she has obviously known for many years as he offers to help out when the problem with her daughter arises. There’s also a quiet but hardworking Finnish man on the team, the ubiquitous bloke with one eye on his retirement, a feisty young female Detective Inspector and a brash and often worrisome young man who has a repugnant attitude towards women. Tursten does a lot with the team dynamics over the course of the novel and all of it quite fascinating.

The case, and therefore the novel’s plot, is complicated but Tursten does a good job of keeping the reader on top of all the threads, some of which turn out to be dead ends (though none the less emotional and engaging in one instance in particular). At times I was a bit lost as to the significance of something everyone in the novel seemed fixated on but I felt like the team were learning what was important and what wasn’t along with me and it felt natural to be a little confused at times. This book did an outstanding job of drawing the reader in to the experience of being in on such a case and the myriad of useless information that has to be collected before it can be discarded as of no importance.

At the same time though Tursten does explore a range of interesting social issues in just the right way to keep me interested in the novel. There’s a really moving thread about the perils of forgetting historical events which might lead to repeating the mistakes of past generations and a gripping, if highly frustrating, storyline about the difficulties still faced by women in workplaces that have traditionally been dominated by men. These were incorporated into the story beautifully and gave the book a quite thought-provoking after taste.

I’m very glad to have been introduced to this thoughtful and engaging series which really does set a high bench mark for novels in the police procedural sub-genre.

My rating 4.5/5 ( )
  bsquaredinoz | Mar 31, 2013 |
Hmmm. It took me until the middle of this book the part with the scene where one of Irene's twin daughters is declaring to be a skin head, that I also remembered to have watched the episode of the TV series that was based on this book. That says enough, I think, about the impression the first episode of the series made on me. But now the book, because that's what it is all about here after all. To cut a long story short:I think it was an okay book, but absolutely not a wow book. Lots of words were used to describe a reasonably good story, that for some reason I was not really gripped by. It felt like I was watching the events from a fairly large distance. I was not hindered by the fact that I had the episode playing in my head while reading the book, it was probably more the absence of any episode / movie at all that caused the feeling of distance between me and the story. In other books of this genre, I often feel like I'm standing in the middle of the action, but that feeling did not come. So despite a female author and a female protagonist there was no click whatsoever between me and the book. That's a shame, but that sometimes happens. ( )
  BoekenTrol71 | Mar 31, 2013 |
This is my favorite crime novel read of the year so far. Irene Huss is an interesting main character: a judo champion with teenage daughters who's one of the few female detectives in her department. Tursten spends plenty of time developing her characters instead of relying on tons of twists in the plot, which is great. My longer review may be found on my blog, http://mswordopolis.wordpress.com/2012/08/24/review-detective-inspector-huss-by-.... ( )
  rkreish | Mar 31, 2013 |
A complex plot with many characters and I found my attention wandering somewhat. ( )
  edwardsgt | Jan 21, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
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Hilmerille ja Cecilialle
To Hilmer and Cecilia
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Nobody saw him fall through the dense November darkness.
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aka The Broken Tang Horse
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 156947303X, Hardcover)

"Add the voice of Helen Tursten to the list of mystery writers who know how to craft a truly satisfying police procedural."—Philadelphia Inquirer

"An absorbing, intelligent mystery that holds its own alongside the best feminine hardboiled novels currently being written by Englishwomen Val McDermid and Liza Cody, and our own Sara Paretsky."—Maureen Corrigan, NPR, "Fresh Air," Washington Post Book World

"The picture Tursten provides of Sweden’s growing anti-immigrant resentment—embodied in Huss’ skinhead daughter—imbues this novel with a cold chill of dread that can’t be attributed only to the subfreezing temperatures of Göteborg in winter."—Chicago Sun-Times

Inspector Irene Huss, stationed in Göteborg, is called through the rain-drenched wintry streets to the scene of an apparent suicide. The dead man landed on the sidewalk in front of his luxurious duplex apartment. He was a wealthy financier connected, through an old-boys’ network, with the first families of Sweden. But the "Society Suicide" turns out to have been a carefully plotted murder. As more murders ensue, she tangles with street gang members, skinheads, immigrants and neo-Nazis—a cross-section of Sweden’s disaffected—in order to catch the killer.

Helene Tursten has been compared to P.D. James in her native Sweden. Her three subsequent Irene Huss mysteries have been highly praised. She was born in Göteborg in 1954 where she now lives.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:44:48 -0400)

After she learns that the apparent suicide of a prominent Swede she was called on to investigate was a carefully plotted murder, Inspector Irene Huss finds herself slogging through the seedy underbelly of Sweden to catch the killer.

(summary from another edition)

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