Don't Look Back

Don't Look Back

Book - 2005
Average Rating:
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In Fossum's moody and subtle U.S. debut, the fifth in her Inspector Sejer series, the popular Norwegian mystery writer displays her mastery of psychological suspense. Richly drawn characters reveal much about Norwegian society, though the setting, a picturesque valley town northwest of Oslo, isn't distinctive. A little girl disappears from her middle-class neighborhood, then returns home unharmed. Meanwhile, the search party discovers the nude corpse of a teenager, Annie Holland, and Fossum seamlessly shifts the story to a murder investigation, using several points of view to create red herrings that add to the suspense. Both girls lived in the same claustrophobic community where the residents claim to know one another but, naturally, don't really. With few clues and no witnesses, seasoned Inspector Konrad Sejer and his eager young assistant Jacob Skarre must uncover the hidden relationships and secrets they hope will lead to the killer of the well-liked, talented Annie. When they learn that the victim's behavior changed suddenly eight months earlier after a child she babysat died by accident, the plot shifts course again and drives to a stunning conclusion and ominous final scene.
Publisher: Orlando : Harcourt, 2005
Edition: 1st Harvest ed
ISBN: 9780156031363
0156031361
Branch Call Number: MYSTERY FOSSUM 2005
Characteristics: 312 p. ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: David, Felicity

Opinion

From Library Staff

Karin Fossum is Norway's “queen of crime.” Her psychological style of storytelling is compared to Ruth Rendell's. First in the Inspector Sejer series.


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a
awc_9
Apr 24, 2016

I would like to think there was a lot missed in translation. I got really tired of characters constantly saying " Well I guess you're wondering why..." Even the detective's passive aggressive "I don't know's" while hes interviewing a suspect make his seem like he legitimately doesn't care about anything.

Everyone was so uninteresting and boring.

I have no idea what to make of the last sentence. I would definitely not recommend this book.

l
LauraSteinert
Oct 30, 2015

It isn't a bad book, but far from engaging. Perhaps it is just a poor translation, but everything and every character seems dull and colorless. One shouldn't have to force themselves to finish a book of fiction--especially a mystery.

c
CindyL
Mar 15, 2014

Karin Fossum weaves a nicely layered who done it. Inspector Sejer is almost refreshing as the smart, fairly straight, but tough, very Norwegian main character. He is no Insp Harry Hole, but an interesting character in his own right. This is the second book I have read by Ms Fossum and look forward to reading more.

r
rosielulu
Jan 20, 2014

boLT PaulStalder

b
bayougal
Nov 22, 2013

This was a very good book. Karin Fossum is another in a great group of Nordic authors I've been obsessed with, and I'm now reading the second book in her Inspector Sejer series.
Well written, bleak and thought provoking, her books take you right into the cold heart of Norway and it's people.

jeanner222 Jan 09, 2013

Our story begins in a small Norwegian village at the foot of the Kollen Mountain. A six-year-old girl is missing, and Inspector Sejer is on the case. But that’s not all that’s happening in the village!

The body of a teenaged girl is found, and Sejer officially has his hands full. The good news: everyone in the village knows everyone else. The bad news? No one has any idea why someone would murder Annie Holland.

Secrets and lies will be revealed as Sejer searches for the murderer. Readers will encounter lots of red herrings along the way.

I really enjoyed this one!

l
Lavenderseas
Oct 09, 2012

Another great Scandinavian mystery, Fossum uses layers of things going on to create a very interesting and exciting story, nice human elements too. Cant wait to read another one of her books. Recommend

d
DeltaQueen50
Apr 28, 2012

Don’t Look Back by Karin Fossum is the second book in her Inspector Sejer series, although it is the first to be translated into English. Taking place in a small town in Norway, this is a case of everyone knowing both the victim, the witnesses and, perhaps even the murderer.

Written in a very different style from most of the Scandicrime books I have read, at first I missed the moody atmosphere that I have come to expect. Nevertheless, this is a first class police procedural and the tension mounts slowly as the police slowly put the pieces together in the death of a fifteen year old girl. With a few red herrings scattered about, they sort through the evidence, painstakingly interview witness and suspects alike.

With Inspector Konrad Sejer, the author has created a strong main character to build her mysteries around and I hope to see more development of this character as the series evolves. In this first book, he acts very much as the lens of a camera, recording the events that happen around him. There are small hints of an interesting backstory and I do hope to learn more in successive books.

Karin Fossum has delivered a good story with suspense and tension, and I certainly will be continuing on with this series

massabielle Mar 14, 2012

Great Book. There was a problem in getting in the NYPL system so I literally went to Queens for it. It was worth the trip. Fossum writes in such a fluid and clear way with intelligent, witty and raw truth. I find her refreshing in that instead of Norway and its surrounding being the emphasized and largely described her characters instead are the highly described and therefore interesting. So much so you want to turn the page to see what is coming....Good read for all. It does not matter where you start in her series ( I am starting on number 3 today) it won't be all that difficult. You may miss some rich history to Sejer but try it.

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lpreston214
Aug 15, 2010

At first, the death of a young teen seems completely out of the blue. Who could have a motive to kill a neighborhood babysitter that everyone loved? However, as we come, along with Inspector Sejer, to know the people of this small town it seems nearly everyone has a secret. As all good mysteries do, this one creates doubt and suspicion right and left. Well plotted.

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