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Invisible Murder (Nina Borg Mysteries) by…
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Invisible Murder (Nina Borg Mysteries) (original 2010; edition 2012)

by Lene Kaaberbol, Agnete Friis

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1821665,058 (3.72)16
Member:annie.michelle
Title:Invisible Murder (Nina Borg Mysteries)
Authors:Lene Kaaberbol
Other authors:Agnete Friis
Info:Soho Crime (2012), Hardcover, 352 pages
Collections:Galleys and free bks.
Rating:*****
Tags:None

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Invisible Murder by Lene Kaaberbol (2010)

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English (15)  Danish (1)  All languages (16)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
It seems I’m returning to series I liked this month–or at least this is the second book in the row that meets the criteria– and I enjoyed Invisible Murder, the second installment in the series featuring Nina Borg, a nurse who moonlights as a nurse for refugees in Denmark. Her work with the Network not only endangers herself, but it has exacted a huge toll on her husband and family, and this book is no exception.

The story centers on two young men who are Roma from Hungary, the younger of whom tries to sell something dangerous to a buyer in Denmark and implicates his brother, a law student on the verge of graduating. The story of Tamas and Sandor is the most affecting part of this book, and I was more invested in their plights than I was in Nina’s. Kaaberbol and Friis also create other sympathetic characters, including the aging investigator Soren Kirkegaard and retired building inspector Sklou-Larsen who has a rocky marriage to a much younger woman. I’m not sure why they don’t portray Nina as a bit more sympathetic: she’s pretty single-minded.

I enjoyed the first and final thirds of the book more than the middle (the second third wasn’t very mysterious to me): the first section told Sandor’s story, and the last section was very brisk as the case came together, but that is my only complaint about the book. I’m not sure why it took me over two years to get back to the series: I’ll be seeking out the rest.
  rkreish | Aug 8, 2014 |
Like its predecessor INVISIBLE MURDER features Danish Red Cross nurse Nina Borg who, in addition to her day job, volunteers for a group known as the Network which helps refugees and other outliers that normal services don’t, or won’t, provide even basic assistance for. Due to events which are described in THE BOY IN THE SUITCASE Nina has agreed that she won’t do any volunteering for the Network during the periods her husband is away from home for work because she needs to be available for their children, eight year-old son Anton and 14 year-old daughter Ida. However, it doesn’t take much arm-twisting from Peter, her Network ‘boss’, for Nina to break this agreement though, as always, it is because someone is in desperate need of help.

In this instance the help is required by a Roma group who are staying at an old garage. Some of the children are very sick with an unknown illness and there is talk of a teenage boy who was much sicker but he is gone by the time Nina visits. She wants the sickest child to be taken to hospital but the men in the group stop her from taking him: their treatment at the hands of authorities in the past has been harsh and they’re not willing to be separated from one of their children. So what can Nina do but continue to offer what help she is able to give?

In parallel threads we meet a teenage law student from Hungary who learns the hard way that other people won’t let him forget his Roma heritage even if he would like to and the life he is trying to construct for himself falls apart. There’s also an elderly ex-building inspector who is worried that his much younger wife will fritter away all the money he leaves her: she’s already been duped by an online real estate scam and he’s not even dead yet!

I’ve never been more pleased than I am now to have given an author (or pair of authors) a second chance after having had a somewhat lukewarm reaction to their fist book. I am already envisaging INVISIBLE MURDER taking its place on my favourites list for this year as it ticks all the boxes for me.

There are a lot of characters but they all have depth and interest. Nina remains a conflicting personality but whereas in the first book I didn’t really believe her more bizarre actions here I thought her behaviour, even when astonishingly obtuse, was entirely credible, even though I still wanted to shake some sense into her a couple of times. And like Nina or not, her willingness to do something practical, and possibly dangerous, about her outrage at the treatment received by society’s most ill-treated people is something to admire. In an era when many people imagine changing their twitter icon a different colour counts as activism I can’t help but think we need a few more Nina Borg’s in the world.

Sándor is the young Hungarian student whose fragile life we watch dramatically fall apart in a deeply troubling way. He runs the gamut of emotions as, through no fault of his own, he loses all the things he’d treasured – his studies, his home, his girlfriend, his dreams for his future – until he is left with what’s in his pockets and a fractured self-image. It’s a very powerful portrait though just thinking about the poor boy brings a tear to my eye.

In addition to being extremely well constructed, the story that unfolds in INVISIBLE MURDER explores several important social issues but without any hectoring or preaching. It does depict what can happen – what lengths people will go to – when they are marginalised or ill-treated and how even the simplest of motivations (to get money for the family to live on for example) can have disastrous consequences. But it doesn’t offer quick-fix solutions or fail to show that the problems faced in societies like Denmark’s are complex. One of my favourite passages of the book involves a bloke called Søren from the Danish Security Police (I’ve forgotten the exact acronym now) who is interviewing Nina in hospital. Both are basically good, decent people with intentions to “help people” but their views of how to achieve that are so different that it’s as though they are speaking completely different languages. Which is a pretty damned good description of the world as we know it most days.

Without once losing sight of the fact it must entertain INVISIBLE MURDER manages to inform, inspire and draw compassion from all but the coldest of hearts. Its characters leap off the page, its story compels the turning of each page. Highly recommended.
1 vote bsquaredinoz | Jan 8, 2014 |
I enjoyed this book, but I didn't think it was wonderful. The first thing that irked me was that the story seemed to take a while to get going. In the prologue we see two Roma boys find something dangerous, and the reader assumes it's radioactive. However 100 pages into the book I was still waiting for the real action to start. There was a fair amount of background. That helped me get to know the characters, but I felt it was a bit tedious. Once the action started the story really pulled me in though! I was worried for Sandor, Nina, Ida, the Roma and everyone else. However after the slow start, with all the details we were given, I felt the ending was rather abrupt. The main story lines were all tied up, but I still felt the ending was abrupt. I wanted to know if Nina was going to patch things up with her husband and daughter. I wanted to know what Sandor was going to do, and if he was going to go back to his family. This was a good book, but the start was a bit slow, and the end needed more details. ( )
  bitter_suite | Aug 31, 2013 |
If I were to describe the perfect book, this one would fill the bill.

The writing style of these two Danish authors is effortless, the flow is smooth, quickly shifting from one character to another, the plot is original and well-executed throughout, and the characters have depth and believability.

In Russia, two boys discover an item in an old, abandoned hospital that they bring to the black market.

Sandor, brother to one of the boys, is a student, desperately trying to escape his impoverished roots and make something of himself.

Nina Borg, the central character in this story, is a nurse who is called to check on a group of sick Hungarian Gypsies.

These characters and their stories are expertly woven together and the result is a masterpiece.

I loved this. ( )
  cmeilink | Feb 16, 2013 |
Several different story lines combine to create an explosive ending in Invisible Murder by Lene Kaaberbol.

Red Cross nurse Nina Borg works at a refugee facility in Denmark , but also secretly works for an underground network that assists Romas and others who have found their way to Denmark.

Jorgen Skou-Larsen is a retired Danish building inspector , married to a woman some twenty years his junior named Helle. Jorgen is increasing concerned with his naive younger wife as she makes irresponsible financial choices.He is also troubled by the mosque being built close to his home.

Sandor Horvath is a hardworking law student in Budapest, concerned about his upcoming law exams.

Meanwhile, Hungarian Romas Tamas and his friend Pitkin scavenge for items to sell to survive. In so doing, they stumble upon an object both valuable and very dangerous, which they intend to sell on the global black market.

An intriguing read, that includes several topical issues, such as Islam in Denmark, the plight and challenge of the poor and homeless Roma people in Europe and Denmark in particular, combine to make this an intelligent and absorbing thriller.

4.2 stars. ( )
2 vote vancouverdeb | Feb 11, 2013 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lene Kaaberbolprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Friis, AgneteAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
chase, taraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Måske finder vi en pistol, sagde Piktin og sigtede med pegefingeren på vagthuset ved porten.
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English translation of Stille umrkeligt drab
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Book description
The second installment in the bestselling Danish crime series starring Red Cross nurse Nina Borg, following Fall 2011's New York Times–bestselling The Boy in the Suitcase

In the ruins of an abandoned Soviet military hospital in northern Hungary, two impoverished Roma boys are scavenging for old supplies or weapons they could sell on the black market when they find more than they ever anticipated. The resulting chain of events threatens to blow the lives of a frightening number of people into bits and pieces.

In this feverishly anticipated follow-up to 2011’s critically acclaimed The Boy in the Suitcase, Danish Red Cross nurse Nina Borg doesn’t realize she is putting life and family on the line when she tries to treat a group of sick Hungarian gypsies who are living illegally in a Copenhagen garage. Nina has unwittingly thrown herself into a deadly nest of the unscrupulous and the desperate, and what is at stake is much more terrifying than anyone had realized.
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Red Cross nurse Nina Borg risks her marriage to assist her friend Peter at a camp of mysteriously ill Roma refugee children whose circumstances prove more complicated and dangerous than originally believed.

(summary from another edition)

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