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A Swedish crime writer as thrilling as Mankell, a detective as compelling as Wallander....
The Mind's Eye by Håkan Nesser is the first novel in the stunning Van Veeteren series.
Janek Mitter stumbles into his bathroom one morning after a night of heavy drinking, to find his beautiful young wife, Eva, floating dead in the bath. She has been brutally murdered. Yet even during his trial Mitter cannot summon a single memory of attacking Eva, nor a clue as to who could have killed her if he had not. Only once he has been convicted and locked away in an asylum for the criminally insane does he have a snatch of insight - but is it too late?
Drawing a blank after exhaustive interviews, Chief Inspector Van Veeteren remains convinced that something, or someone, in the dead woman's life has caused these tragic events. But the reasons for her speedy remarriage have died with her. And as he delves even deeper, Van Veeteren realizes that the past never stops haunting the present....
The Mind's Eye is followed by the tensely gripping Borkmann's Point.
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Low-Key Start to Scandinavian Crime Series
First-published 25 years ago The Mind's Eye introduces Hakan Nesser's detective Van Veeteren. A curmudgeonly Chief Inspector with about ten years to his retirement. To me it read as slightly more dated than its early 90s publication date. The mildly traditional narration style employed by David Timson added to this feel and made all the characters sound uniformly older. He does however have a voice I could happily listen to more.
I did quite enjoy it, especially the courtroom scenes in the early part of the book though Van Veeteren himself takes a back seat in those early exchanges. He does come more into it as the rather linear mystery develops.
From what I can tell from reading on Goodreads those who like the series think this low-key start is built on well in the books to come and I may well try them. This relatively brief introduction is enjoyable enough but it is of a vintage and to me doesn't stand out in this crowded genre.
Worth a read but not what I would call outstanding,.
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