Thursday, October 27, 2016

The ice queen, by Nele Neuhaus

The plot of this German suspense novel is convoluted, full of surprises and echoes from the dark past of the Nazi era.  It’s part of a series, but I hadn’t read the first two.  The characters include a somewhat too familiar sensitive and perceptive male detective, Oliver von Bodenstein, teamed with a more aggressive and rough-edged female assistant, in this case, Pia Kirchhoff.  Both characters, as well as the secondary cast of the police, are well-drawn.  When Holocaust survivor Jossi Goldberg is found shot execution style in his new German home --  he had returned to Europe after long living in the United States and becoming a citizen – it is the first in a series of interrelated murders.  Bodenstein and Kirchhoff, racing against time to prevent even more deaths, become aware that none of the victims is who he or she seems to be.  The final standoff in a ruined East Prussian castle brings yet more twists to the plot.  Intriguing, but a bit long.  342 pp.

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