2 February 2013

Review: BABYLON, Camilla Ceder

  • published in Swedish 2010
  • translated by Marlaine Delargy 2012
  • this edition in English published by Weidenfeld & Nicolson 2013
  • ISBN 978-0-297-86669-5
  • 293 pages
  • source: my local library
Synopsis ( Google Books)

Inspector Christian Tell and his team are called to the scene of a double murder. University lecturer Anne-Marie Karpov lies dead in her home, alongside her student and lover, Henrik.
The crime appears straightforward: Henrik's girlfriend Rebecca, a woman in therapy for her violent jealousy, had been spotted outside Karpov's flat, and her fingerprints are found on the door.

My Take

#2 in a police procedural series with central character Inspector Christian Tell. I reviewed the first, FROZEN MOMENT, in March 2011.

While this was a very readable book, it is not a stand-out for me, sharing many characteristics with the current batch of translated police procedurals: a middle aged police inspector who is a bit of a loner and whose team solves crimes more by intuition than by method. There's a new superintendent who puts the team offside right from the start and Inspector Tell feels challenged by him. Part of the book focusses on Tell's relationship with his younger girlfriend and a little of that went a long way.

The structure of the story is clever. At first the solution to the crime looks very straightforward but then the investigation turns up new evidence and it becomes obvious that the suspect could not have killed them. Other solutions are proposed and seem very plausible but don't quite fit the facts. Rebecca's flat is burgled, so then it seems that her dead partner Henrik holds the key.

For me, while I enjoyed the book, I had the feeling of being patiently led to the right answer.

My rating: 4.3

See a EuroCrime review by the later Maxine Clarke.

1 comment:

Irene said...

thanks for your honesty.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin