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The Murder of Halland by Pia Juul
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The Murder of Halland (2009)

by Pia Juul

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
12417149,656 (3.46)18
Denmark's foremost literary author turns crime fiction on its head. Bess and Halland live in a small town, where everyone knows everyone else. When Halland is found murdered in the main square the police encounter only riddles. For Bess, bereavement marks the start of a journey that leads her to a reassessment of first friends then family.… (more)
Recently added byRob_J, private library, aemoore, Ygraine, niallh, Nic_C, nilsr, martinkalkerup, elkiedee
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» See also 18 mentions

English (14)  Danish (3)  All languages (17)
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Unutterably awful read, boring, pointess and 100% forgettable.
The narrator is a middle aged writer, living with her second husband. There was an acrimonious split from her first, a breach in her relationship with her daughter; there are underlying issues. And then, almost immediately, her husband is shot dead.
When the police barge in, stating they know she did it, we feel a murder mystery coming on. But then there's no more...she's left unhampered to carry on living her rather disturbed life. Is she a totally unreliable narrator? Did she do it?
Secrets seem to come out- Halland was having affairs. (but maybe that's not true either?) Because you don't know what's happening really, the whole thing has zero interest.
I needed a 2009 book for my Century of Books Reading Challenge so continued grimly on to end. Otherwise would have stopped a lot sooner. DIRE!! ( )
  starbox | Nov 14, 2018 |
This was a quick reading. The story is about Bess who was awakened one morning by a shot and her partner Halland lay dead on the court. Besides the main question, who shot Halland, a lot is going on about Bess's past, her feelings and her knotted life. The story is exciting and varied. ( )
  Ameise1 | Oct 15, 2016 |
OK - frankly I have no clue about what actually happened...who killed Halland...but I'm not sure that even really matters. A wonderfully written book to savour at that level even if the plot is anything but obvious. Highly recommended. ( )
  TomMcGreevy | Jun 9, 2016 |
An antidote to the usual Scandanivian murder mysteries. Take every standard bit from the typical crime novel, insert, and then leave it flapping in the breeze. But it's a nice breeze. And the blue fjords are like trembling mirrors. In my mind, the protagonist narrator Bess is always wearing a baggy Nordic sweater just like Sarah's in Forbrydelsen. And somehow it all works. ( )
  TheBookJunky | Apr 22, 2016 |
Like all good Scandi design, this Danish crime novella's strength is in it's simple yet unconventional lines.

Bess is a writer, and we very quickly find out that her long-term partner Halland has been shot dead in the square outside their home. What transpires is less about the 'whodunnit' and more about Bess' unconventional reaction to his death. She's a difficult character to get the measure of, and her unpredictability plus the mystery of Halland's death nicely builds the dramatic tension in this crisp, spare piece of work.

This was the first Peirene published work I've read, and I found the ethos of the publishing house interesting: "Contemporary European Literature. Thought provoking, well designed, short." Described by the TLS as "Two-hour books to be devoured in a single sitting: literary cinema for those fatigued by film", this hits the nail on the head perfectly.

4 stars - an intriguing, literary crime noir. ( )
1 vote AlisonY | Aug 21, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 14 (next | show all)
Det er ikke bare dødsensalvorligt, det er også klukkende morsomt. Det er ikke bare sprogligt suverænt, det er også elementært spændende.
added by 2810michael | editInformation
 
Pia Juul skriver blændende med mundrette og bidende dialoger i mesterklasse...Ren krimikunst.
added by 2810michael | editEkstra Bladet
 
En pragtfuld opvisning af, hvad litteraturen kan give os.
added by 2810michael | editPolitiken
 
Pia Juul tager den dorske danske kriminalgenre ved vingebenet og viser, hvad en rigtig forfatter kan få ud af et kriminalistisk plot, og hvor dybt i sindet og sproget det kan stikke...En konstant nydelse"
*****
added by 2810michael | editBerlingske Tidende
 

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pia Juulprimary authorall editionscalculated
Aitken, MartinTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
May they come together,
happy in heart forever,
who long to be as one!
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With thanks to Herman and Gustav
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The night before, we sat in the living room.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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