Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Review of The Abominable Man by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (1971, Harper)

Sweden in the early 1970s. A senior police office is killed with a bayonet in his hospital room. The case is dealt with by Martin Beck, the head of the national murder squad, and his team. Nyland was a disagreeable character and there are plenty of people likely to hold grudges, but they quickly hone in on one. But as well as being deadly dangerous, he seems to have little to lose.

The seventh book in the series, the tale is one of police brutality, lack of accountability, and revenge, providing as usual a social commentary on an aspect of Swedish life. The plot is fairly linear with little mystery, more focused on the reason for the attack and the chase to apprehend. And the ending is very abrupt with no wrapping up or examination of the fallout. In my view, while still a good read, it’s the weakest in the series so far.

1 comment:

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