Sunday Salon: Susan Hill and Helene Tursten

Sunday Salon The latest reviews are up at Euro Crime, including two of mine. Both books are excellent, and highly recommended. One is The Vows of Silence, Susan Hill's latest, just out in the UK. From my review:

"The fourth Simon Serrailler novel looks at death from a wide range of perspectives: natural, unnatural; past and present; of old characters and new ones. By the end of it, I felt I had gone through the wringer, but as usual with this author, the journey was worth it." Read on here.

The other review is of an absolutely superb book, Detective Inspector Huss, and I'm grateful to Karen of Euro Crime for bringing my attention to the author, Helene Tursten, a while back. Karen reviewed a book by Tursten called The Torso, second in a series. Despite being a bit put off by the outline of the torso plot, I bought the first book. It's brilliant, It falls into the category of "if you only read three books this year, make this one of them." From my review:

"Although I often enthuse about Scandinavian crime fiction, DETECTIVE INSPECTOR HUSS is an excellent police procedural even by the sky-high standards of authors such as Henning Mankell, Karin Fossum, Arndaldur Indridason and Kjell Ericksen.
Irene Huss is a 40-something police detective, happily married to Krister, a chef, and with twin teenage daughters Kristina and Jenny. The book tells the story of her and her colleagues' investigation into the death of a rich financier, Richard von Knecht, who falls from his balcony window in spectacular fashion as the book opens in the middle of a cold and slushy Swedish winter, while his wife and their adult son are waiting for him in their car below." Read on here.

There are other excellent reviews at Euro Crime today. I'm particularly intrigued by Karen C's review of Crow Stone by Jenni Mills, and Norman Price has turned in his usual insightful and informed review of a book that is waiting for me to read: Death in Breslau by Marek Krajewski. Pat Austin has read the latest Stuart MacBride, Flesh House. I'm on the fence about this author, but I've only read his first, so should give him another go, really (especially as I've got the second book to read, courtesy of an excellent Amazon deal). Finally, for this week, is Mike Ripley's May crime file round-up – a writer always worth reading for his humorous insights.

12 thoughts on “Sunday Salon: Susan Hill and Helene Tursten

  1. ‘The Vows of Silence’ is next up on my pile, so I deliberately haven’t read your review. I’ll come back to it in a couple of days when I’ve posted my own.

  2. And it’s got the new Coben for £7.49 — how do they do it? (Sussex Stationers, a bricks and mortar shop (a chain in which some branches are called British Bookshops), has the Coben and the new Elizabeth George for around £9 each (as well as all the new R&Js for £3.99 along with everyone else I suppose) plus lots of other excellent bargains that are better than WHS, Waterstones and Borders.

  3. Every time I drop in you have changed your “skin”. I quite like the pastel blue look. I’ve got VOWS OF SILENCE on order from the library and I too really enjoyed DETECTIVE INSPECTOR HUSS

  4. Your review mentioned Tursten’s incorporation of Irene Huss’ domestic life in Detective Inspector Huss. I thought she managed the integration of professional and domestic life better in The Glass Devil.
    By the way — and this might be of more interest to Crime Scraps than to you — did you know that Helene Tursten is a former dentist?
    Detectives Beyond Borders
    “Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home”

  5. Maxine – I can’t agree with your comments about The Torso more – I really enjoyed that book as well – enough to go out and add all of her others to Mt TBR immediately. Now all I have to do is find the time to read them!
    Stuart MacBride’s Flesh House was a great book, but it has an ambiguous ending which won’t work for a lot of people. I love his series, but he does use humour interspersed with very confrontational subject matter which is going to put some people off. DI Steele has to be read to be believed though 🙂

  6. Helene Tursten a former dentist!
    Are there any dentists left in Scandinavia? I was drilled and filled by a lovely lady from Bergen the other day, and every other dentist in Britain is from Sweden.
    But clearly this is an author I MUST read.

  7. These dentists, they get everywhere!
    Thanks for all the comments – it seems I hit a winner with Helene Tursten. I’ve got a long train journey tomorrow so I may take The Torso along for the ride in the light of all this enthusiasm.
    Kerrie, I’ve been having so many technical hitches and problems recently that I thought I’d try a spell with a very simple design, to see if it helped.
    I think I was a bit put off Stuart MacBride by the hype for his first novel – which was OK but not as good as some that don’t get the same publicity. Also a bit on the gruesome side for my taste. But I will give the second one a try….sometime…..

  8. I read read the Tursten some time ago, but in the German translation (where the title is predictably something else), since I prefer to read series in order where possible. Anyway, thanks for an excellent review of an excellent book, which has reminded me that Torso is sitting unread on my bookshelf. (In English this time!)
    Er, hello, by the way, from a long-time lurker.

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