Monday, November 23, 2020

The Tenant by Katrine Engberg

An elderly man stumbles upon his dead neighbor. Literally. Kicking off an investigation into a truly twisted series of crimes. 

Partners Jeppe Korner and Annette Werner are two of the officers assigned to the investigation. And at first it seems fairly clear cut. They believe the woman, who shared the apartment with a friend who was confirmed to be out of town, was killed by a spurned lover. 

But the case takes an odd turn when Korner and Werner learn that the murder is a real life copy of a fictionalized on in an as yet unpublished novel being written by the girl's own landlord. 

By the time a second body is discovered, the police are no longer certain who their prime suspect should be: the retired professor with a drinking problem whose novel seems to be the killer's template? Someone from the girl's past? Or someone with a connection to her well-heeled father? What they are certain of is the fact that the killer has only just begun. 

What did I say? More Nordic Noir reviews to come :)

This Danish-set mystery is the first in a new series featuring Korner and Werner (and there are jokes within the book about the similarity in their names). 

I loved the bookish aspect of this one. A killer who somehow has access to an unpublished manuscript and is using it as inspiration for the murders? That's right up my alley! 

Of course this seems to narrow Korner's and Werner's list of suspects and they do have a few theories, some of which are incredibly frustrating considering they're what the police even acknowledge as the easy way out. And yet, each time they come close, something throws them off the trail. 

There's a nice twist in this one even if it was one that I saw coming when it was finally revealed. I also loved getting to know Korner in particular. Considering, though, that this is billed as the Korner and Werner series, I really didn't think that we got much from Werner in this first outing. I'll be interested to see what Engberg does with her in the follow up title, due out in Jan. 

All in all, this is a fun first in a new series and one that I hope will draw more readers into the Nordic Noir subgenre!

Order a copy from your favorite indie via Bookshop!

No comments: