What is it about Swedish writers that chill me to the bone? I wonder if it is the subconscious thought of a cold and biting landscape; perhaps those Swiss commercials for hot chocolate and throat drops? No matter the reason, Camilla Lackberg and The Preacher left me chilled and shivering the whole book through!
This second installment in the series is set in the coastal town of Fjallabacka and brings back the main character of Erica Falk, who is now side-lined with the impending birth of her first child. This novel shifts focus to the local police force which includes the father of her baby, Peter. Peter is lead investigator on the report of a missing girl that soon turns to a death investigation. This murder is just the first in a string of missing young women. While Erika does some assisting with her investigative research skills, Peter is the real detective and lead investigator. He is also responsible for his detective team, a hodge-podge of local yokels who do little but slow him down and boggle the investigation. Peter has more than that to contend with, though, as his one case soon turns into a manhunt for a possible serial killer.
This book is a delight for some many reasons--it is as frightening as it is funny. I ran the full gamut of emotions while reading and found myself reluctant to put the book down for even a moment until I finished the whole thing. Lackberg's writing style is masterful as she draws the reader cleverly in, making us care about every character in the book. While the mystery and killings are puzzling and brilliantly done, the best part of the story really takes place in the lives of the characters and their relationships to one another. This is one of the few books that I’ve read where I became emotionally invested in every character, both main and secondary, likable and unlikable. It started to feel less like a book and more real, with each character becoming a person, with motives and aims that was a puzzle to me. I kept asking myself, ‘How does this fit?’ ‘Why is he acting this way/saying these things?’.
Overall, one of the best murder mysteries/thrillers I’ve read in a long time. The only bad news? Now, it’s one more series that I’ll HAVE to follow—it’s that good! But don't take it from me; read an excerpt for yourself:
Open Road Publishing Excerpt