By James Thompson
(Berkley Trade, Paperback, 9780425253441, 368pp.)
Publication Date: February 5, 2013
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Inspector Kari Vaara, recovering from brain surgery, is back to doing police work—under circumstances most cops only dream of. Reporting directly to the national chief of police, Kari and his partners Milo and Sulo have been granted secrecy and autonomy for their new black-ops unit, and plenty of cash to work with, including whatever they can steal from Helsinki’s mobsters. But Kari's team is too good, and their actions have unintended consequences...The president of Finland wants the team on a new case: the vicious assassination of a prominent immigrants' rights activist. Against a backdrop of simmering hatred spreading across the country, Kari must solve a case that involves the kidnapping of a billionaire’s children, a Faustian bargain with a former French Legionnaire—and his own wife.
James Thompson, eastern Kentucky-born and raised, has lived in Finland for more than a dozen years; he now resides in Helsinki with his wife. His debut novel, Snow Angels, was selected as a Booklist Best Crime Novel Debut of the Year and was nominated for Edgar®, Anthony, and Strand Magazine critics awards. Before becoming a full-time writer, Thompson studied Finnishin which he is fluentand Swedish, and worked as a bartender, bouncer, construction worker and soldier. He is also the author of Lucifer's Tears, also in the Inspector Vaara series.
“The narrative is exquisitely quick…hard to put down.”—Houston Chronicle
“Thompson's style is on the dark end of the ‘Nordic Noir’ spectrum. The genre — with its stark and often violent police procedurals — has proved wildly successful…The marquee names have come from Sweden — think Stieg Larsson's Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, or Henning Mankell's Wallander series — but Norway's Jo Nesbo and Iceland's Arnaldur Indridason and Yrsa Sigurdardottir have also made their mark with international readers. Thompson stands out from that crowd by writing in English and telling Vaara's gritty narrative in the first person. ”--The New York Times
“In his dozen years of living in Finland…Thompson has absorbed enough cold, dark atmosphere for a spot on the roster of top Nordic crime writers—Mankell, Nesbø, Indrioason and the like.”—The New York Post
“A must-read for fans of Stieg Larsson and Henning Mankell.”—Booklist
“The laconic voice of Inspector Kari Vaara is at the same time dangerous and human, his world cold, barren, yet intriguingly exotic.”—Peter Høeg, New York Times bestselling author of Smilla’s Sense of Snow