HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Another Time, Another Life by Leif G.W.…
Loading...
MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
193None60,678 (3.72)2
None

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 2 mentions

English (10)  Swedish (2)  All languages (12)
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
Synopsis/blurb......
Stockholm, 1975: Six young people take the entire staff of the West German embassy hostage. The long siege ends with the deaths of two hostages and the wounding of several others. Jump to 1989: When a Swedish civil servant is murdered, the two leading detectives on the case find their investigation hastily shelved by a corrupt senior investigator. Ten years later: Lars Johansson, having just joined the Swedish Security Police, decides to tie up a few loose ends left behind by his predecessor: specifically, two files on Swedes who had allegedly collaborated on the 1975 takeover of the West German embassy, one of whom turned out to be the murder victim in 1989. Johansson reopens the investigation and follows the leads--right up to the doorstep of Sweden's newly minted minister of justice.
Well after a month’s break from this author having oscillated between enjoyed/endured/enjoyed/endured for Between Summer’s Longing And Winter’s End, I saddled up on got back on the horse for another trip in Persson’s company this time around. Thankfully it was somewhat shorted that our last stamina test at just under 480 pages long.
Persson again blends fact and fiction into his novel, reminding me of James Ellroy in regards to grabbing hold of a seismic event in recent Swedish history and constructing a fictional narrative around it.
We start with the occupation of the German Embassy in Stockholm which ends violently with an explosion after the deaths of a couple of the hostages. Several of Persson’s recurring police characters are present at the events in 1975, mainly Jarnebring; best friend of Lars Martin Johannson.
We fast forward to 1989 where Jarnebring discovers the death of Kjell Eriksson after responding to an emergency call from a neighbour. The investigation into his murder is led by the corrupt, homophobic Backstrom and very quickly descends into farce with Backstrom’s insistence that the crime is because of Eriksson’s obvious homosexuality, consequentially routing the investigation down a blind alley. Jarnebring, aided by the capable Anna Holt pursue other more probable avenues of enquiry but eventually the case is shelved unsolved. Eriksson; a nasty, controlling, unloved, unmourned, friendless victim is apparently forgotten.
We jump forward another 11 years to the year 2000, and the aftermath of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Johansson, head of the internal Swedish Security Police is asked to sign off on the prospective appointment of Helena Stein to the higher level of the Swedish government. When the checks uncover a link between Stein and Eriksson and the German Embassy seizure, Detectives Holt get the opportunity to re-open the investigation into Eriksson’s murder; this time without Backstrom’s interference.
Overall, I enjoyed this slightly more than the first book in loose “The Story of a Crime” trilogy. Persson expertly knits together a narrative that had me constantly marvelling at the skilful way in which he layers detail into his plot. It was an interesting and educational read, as I learned something more about Sweden’s recent history. Persson’s policemen and women are always entertaining and readable, even the abhorrent ones – Mr Backstrom!
Whilst the minutia last time was a wee bit excessive, I didn’t experience the same frustrations this time around. Being shorter than the first book by approximately 200 pages definitely helped. Slightly less challenging than last time, but well worth the time invested in it.
I’m looking forward to the next book of his – Linda, As In The Linda Murder, though I will probably take another month off before tackling it.
4 stars from 5.
I borrowed my copy from my local library.

( )
  col2910 | Apr 17, 2014 |
Synopsis/blurb......
Stockholm, 1975: Six young people take the entire staff of the West German embassy hostage. The long siege ends with the deaths of two hostages and the wounding of several others. Jump to 1989: When a Swedish civil servant is murdered, the two leading detectives on the case find their investigation hastily shelved by a corrupt senior investigator. Ten years later: Lars Johansson, having just joined the Swedish Security Police, decides to tie up a few loose ends left behind by his predecessor: specifically, two files on Swedes who had allegedly collaborated on the 1975 takeover of the West German embassy, one of whom turned out to be the murder victim in 1989. Johansson reopens the investigation and follows the leads--right up to the doorstep of Sweden's newly minted minister of justice.
Well after a month’s break from this author having oscillated between enjoyed/endured/enjoyed/endured for Between Summer’s Longing And Winter’s End, I saddled up on got back on the horse for another trip in Persson’s company this time around. Thankfully it was somewhat shorted that our last stamina test at just under 480 pages long.
Persson again blends fact and fiction into his novel, reminding me of James Ellroy in regards to grabbing hold of a seismic event in recent Swedish history and constructing a fictional narrative around it.
We start with the occupation of the German Embassy in Stockholm which ends violently with an explosion after the deaths of a couple of the hostages. Several of Persson’s recurring police characters are present at the events in 1975, mainly Jarnebring; best friend of Lars Martin Johannson.
We fast forward to 1989 where Jarnebring discovers the death of Kjell Eriksson after responding to an emergency call from a neighbour. The investigation into his murder is led by the corrupt, homophobic Backstrom and very quickly descends into farce with Backstrom’s insistence that the crime is because of Eriksson’s obvious homosexuality, consequentially routing the investigation down a blind alley. Jarnebring, aided by the capable Anna Holt pursue other more probable avenues of enquiry but eventually the case is shelved unsolved. Eriksson; a nasty, controlling, unloved, unmourned, friendless victim is apparently forgotten.
We jump forward another 11 years to the year 2000, and the aftermath of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Johansson, head of the internal Swedish Security Police is asked to sign off on the prospective appointment of Helena Stein to the higher level of the Swedish government. When the checks uncover a link between Stein and Eriksson and the German Embassy seizure, Detectives Holt get the opportunity to re-open the investigation into Eriksson’s murder; this time without Backstrom’s interference.
Overall, I enjoyed this slightly more than the first book in loose “The Story of a Crime” trilogy. Persson expertly knits together a narrative that had me constantly marvelling at the skilful way in which he layers detail into his plot. It was an interesting and educational read, as I learned something more about Sweden’s recent history. Persson’s policemen and women are always entertaining and readable, even the abhorrent ones – Mr Backstrom!
Whilst the minutia last time was a wee bit excessive, I didn’t experience the same frustrations this time around. Being shorter than the first book by approximately 200 pages definitely helped. Slightly less challenging than last time, but well worth the time invested in it.
I’m looking forward to the next book of his – Linda, As In The Linda Murder, though I will probably take another month off before tackling it.
4 stars from 5.
I borrowed my copy from my local library. ( )
  col2910 | Jun 14, 2013 |
I don’t want to spoil any of the elements that made this book remarkable for me so all I’ll be sparse with my summary of the plot, which spans a 25 year period. In 1975 a group of radicals take over the German embassy in Stockholm, killing two of their hostages before blowing up the building (either accidentally or purposefully). Readers are treated to a view of the investigation into this incident and its impact on some individual police officers as well as the wider political climate. About 15 years later a man is murdered in his Stockholm apartment and we see this investigation, involving some of the same officers who were present during the German embassy case, in much more detail. A further 10 years later the Swedish version of the secret police, now headed up by one of the officers we’ve met in earlier sections of the book, is asked to look into the background of a prominent politician who is on track to be offered a very senior government post.

This book’s full title is ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER LIFE: THE STORY OF A CRIME and rarely have I come across a book with such a perfectly descriptive name. It describes in a nutshell a theme that is teased out as the layers of the story are revealed and the author explores the idea that people and societies both can be virtually unrecognisable to themselves if viewed at different points on a time scale. I particularly liked the fact that Persson got me thinking about personal and social accountability for the actions of our earlier selves but did not provide any easy answers (which is a hint that this book is not for those of you who like definitive solutions in your fiction). The other reason that the title of the book is so perfect is that it really is the story of a particular crime which has its origins and resolution many years apart but that can only be understood with full knowledge of a range of temporally separated incidents. The way that Persson structures this tale is very clever as it misdirects readers to focus their attention on a specific incident while he builds up a broader picture of a changing society that only becomes fully clear at the novel’s end. From a plotting perspective this is one of the most satisfying novels I’ve read in a very long time.

Other than this element the book breaks…or severely bends… several of my personal ‘rules’ for good reading, which makes my complete enjoyment of it something of a surprise. One of the ways the book doesn’t conform to the kind of thing I normally like to read is that it is rather slow, especially in the longest middle section. But even though I recognised as I was reading that the pace was not really my cup of tea I knew that I wouldn’t mind in this instance because of the sense I had from the outset that my patience would be rewarded. On one level you see a team of investigators – a hodgepodge of characters including a prejudiced, time-wasting buffoon and a young female officer involved in her first murder case – methodically piece together the tiny fragments of evidence left behind by the killer and eliminate dead ends. But on another level there’s a picture being developed of Swedish society, changed from its 1975 self by the collapse of the Soviet Union among other external influences. By the third act of the book – which again features a precisely detailed investigation – the social and political changes have, insidiously, become more pronounced and profound. It was really only here, in this final segment of the book, that I fully appreciated what Persson had been doing all along, though undoubtedly a more perceptive reader would have cottoned on much sooner.

Another feature of the novel that would not normally be to my taste is its remote sensibility. Its tone is almost one of reportage rather than the more standard ‘draw the reader in’ narrative of crime fiction and there are too many characters to really form any emotional connection to them, at least in the early parts of the story. But as a collective I did find them compelling – especially as I watched them change over the years. Anna Holt, whom we first meet as an inexperienced detective facing rampant sexism really comes into her own a decade later when both she and the society she is a part of have changed and she and two other female colleagues really take the lead in this time and place. Lars Johansson has a role in all three sections of the novel but it is not until the end – when he has taken over SePo (the secret police) that we get real insight into what makes him tick and how his participation in earlier events has shaped him. It’s fascinating stuff.

A brief survey of the usual spots shows that reviews of this novel tend to be polarised: readers either love it or hate it with very few indifferent opinions on display. I feel fortunate I fell into the former category but I can see why people would feel differently about the book than I did so consider yourselves warned: I’ve no idea which camp you’ll fall into if you do pick the book up. Following the advice of a good friend I opted not to read this book’s predecessor, apparently the start of a trilogy, and do not feel I was missing anything by not having grappled with the dense 600+ pages so feel safe in recommending it even if you haven’t read the earlier novel. If you like novels that challenge and inform I think you ought to give this one a go and I hope you find it as surprising a good read as I did.
  bsquaredinoz | Apr 24, 2013 |
This book takes us from the (factually real) bombing of the West German embassy in Stockholm in 1975 to a (fictional) murder investigation in 1989, and finally to a revisiting of that murder in 1999 when a link to the 1975 event suggests itself. The book, in making use of a real life event from 1975, and later documenting the establishment of the swedish secret security service in order to contextualise to some degree the fictional story, blends the real with the fictional in a way that serves to emphasise (as I see it) Persson's desire to have his works act as a form of commentary on aspects of Swedish society. Therefore there is much more to his books than just the fictional storyline, and the reader needs to be aware of this in order to fully understand what is going on and what the author is attempting. It ought to be said too that the author's expertise as a criminologist, his advisory role to the Swedish Justice ministry and his standing in that respect, lends some weight and authenticity to the book. The book offers plenty of insight into police behaviour and into the various police characters involved in the different events and time frames, with the sexism and bigotry present to some degree in the previous book even more obvious in this. That said, there is a mix of sympathetic police characters and some less than so.

This book is a mix of police procedural, political satire and psychological study, and of added interest maybe to the reader with an interest in the murkier side of politics and the establishment. It should be said too that the pace is slow, but that is Persson's style. The one place where I started to lose interest,ironically enough, was towards the middle of the book when, after the 1989 murder investigation, the author goes about describing events around the fall of the Berlin wall, the rush to get hands on former East German intelligence and the establishment of the Swedish secret police. A second reading and I would be better prepared for this venture into documentary and away from the core storyline for an albeit brief time. This book for me was a big improvement on his first (Between Summer's Longing and Winter's End), but its lack of pace and ventures into documentary meant for me it fell just short of 4 stars (out of five). 3.5 stars from me. ( )
  ebyrne41 | Mar 26, 2013 |
The synopsis above gives you a pretty good plot outline without giving everything away. So it remains for me to tell you what I thought of it. ANOTHER TIME, ANOTHER LIFE is #2 in a trilogy of police procedurals featuring detectives Bo Jarnebring and Lars Johansson. It is currently the only one of the trilogy to be translated into English.

To be honest it took me quite a while to get used to what appeared to be the author's sardonic tone. He seemed to have a very poor opinion of both the Swedish police and the secret police, the quality of their personnel and their investigative capabilities. Persson also explores the forms that corruption can take. Sometimes I found his cynicism unpleasant to the point of being distracting.

At times I felt lost in the descriptions of political events from 1975 onwards in Sweden in particular although I already had some general knowledge of them. The connections between the events of 1975, 1989 and 1999 weren't obvious at the beginning and made for quite a complicated plot.

Persson explores some interesting philosophical ideas too - among them that justice is not always best served by carrying out the letter of the law. Retribution can come in other forms and can even be self-administered.

Will I read another? I found the characters of Lars Johansson and Bo Jarnebring intriguing, and so I probably will, should another become available in English. ( )
  smik | Jan 11, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Information from the Swedish Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Alternative titles
Information from the Norwegian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
Till Mikael och Björnen, Vad är det för vits med att varna någon som inte kan försvara sig? Professorn
First words
Torsdagen den 24 april 1975 kom döden på kontorstid och för ovanlighetens skull i skepnad av både kvinna och man.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Information from the Russian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
From the back cover of the Livre de poche edition (2008):

Y aurait-il quelque chose de pourri au royaume de Suède ? Sous le soleil de minuit est une chronique âpre et sans concession des événements qui ont profondément marqué la société suédoise, de 1975 – l’année où eut lieu une prise d’otages sanglante à l’ambassade d’Allemagne de l’Ouest à Stockholm – à 2000.

Terrorisme, manipulations politico-financières, compromissions de tous ordres et intrigues de la CIA, le tableau en forme de puzzle que brosse Leif GW Persson est noir, très noir.

Mais il en faudrait plus pour décourager le très attachant Lars Martin Johansson, de la Brigade criminelle, qualifié par certains de « seul flic suédois honnête »...
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

In 1975 , six young people stormed the West German embassy in Stockholm, taking the entire staff hostage. They demanded the immediate release of members of the Baader- Meinhof group being held as prisoners in West Germany, but twelve hours into the siege, the embassy was blown up, two hostages were dead, and many others were injured, including the captors. Thus begins Leif GW Persson's Another Time, Another Life.… (more)

» see all 4 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
1 avail.
20 wanted
3 pay

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.72)
0.5
1
1.5
2 3
2.5
3 8
3.5 6
4 23
4.5 1
5 4

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 89,502,343 books! | Top bar: Always visible