“The Return” by Håkan Nesser


The Return

A Swedish crime thriller, inasmuch as it was written by a Swedish writer. The action takes place in some imaginary backwoods in an unspecified part of Northern Europe. The Chief Inspector Van Veeteren (sounds more Dutch than Swedish) has to go into hospital for a serious operation to remove part of his large intestine, he has cancer. The hospital stay gives him a chance to ruminate on what seems to be an almost perfect crime. A body has been discovered by a schoolchild in the woods. The victim it transpires is Leopold Verhaven, a notorious character who had been a disgraced track star before being found guilty twice of murder. The return of the title is the victim’s return from prison, as he is killed very soon after his release.The victim was an unusual character, very much a loner, who stoically spent 24 years behind bars for two murders he claimed he hadn’t committed. Studying the trial transcripts and press cuttings Van Veeteren concludes that the evidence against Verhaven was thin and circumstantial.

My main criticism of the book is that it told the story of how the mystery was solved without really involving the reader in solving along the way. Van Veeteren is an interesting character as is the victim Verhaven.

My rating 4 out of 5


About jimholroyd365

Hi, my name is Jim, I am an Englishman living in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi. I started this blog to share my interests, my photos and to make sense of my world. I take a lot of photographs of various subjects, some of which I intend to share here. I collect diecast cars and get the same thrill at 50 as I did when I was 8, when I find a car I'm searching for, Don't worry, I have a separate blog for this hobby. Please feel free to comment and ask questions on what I blog. I am quite new to this blogging, I was inspired by reading a book, which began as a blog of a London Ambulance Driver: "Blood, Sweat and Tea". I hope my blog will be entertaining and amusing, I did try stand up comedy in the UK and had seven gigs before I left to teach English in Georgia. I love reading and so the blog will include book reviews of books as I finish them.I don't know about which direction this blog will go, I am a great believer in serendipity...let the journey begin...
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