Reviewed by Jessi Buchmann

Malin Fors is an intense detective working in small town of Linkoping, Sweden. She’s a thirty-four year old woman-divorced from her partner Janne (whom she feels she married too young)-attempting to be a mother to her teenage daughter, Tove. Malin, who has a sharp eye for criminality, seems to be completely disconnected and oblivious to the on goings in her daughter’s life.

Midwinter Blood opens with the horrific killing of a man, Bengt Andersson, whom the community only knows as isolated, bullied and alone. It is the coldest February on record in Linkoping and Malin and her partner Zeke begin unraveling the riddle before them, starting at the hanging of the man in a tree.

The story jumps from narrator to third person of the newly departed Andersson but does so seamlessly. I was sucked into this novel in less than a hundred pages when I read Bengt’s spirit tell Malin “Do you really want to hear the story? I don’t think so. It is worse, nastier, darker more merciless than you can imagine. If you carry on from here, you are choosing a path that leads right into the heart of the place where only the body, not the soul, can live and breathe, where we are chemistry, where we are code, the place outside, where the word ‘feeling’ does not exist.” It is here that Kallentoft’s story exists. In a place where we can’t imagine what one human can do to another. These terrors live only with the detectives who solve their cases and the ones who commit the crimes.

Kallentoft’s writing is descriptive and walks you down the path the Fors takes. There are moments where it compares to watching a scene out of CSI. Don’t compare this to Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, it’s quite a different story and although there are some similarities and the characters are just as rich, the writing differs. I realized after picking this book that it’s part of a series. I thoroughly enjoyed this thriller and am already signed up to read the others in the series: Spring Remains, Summer Death and Autumn Sonata.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Jessi Buchmann lives in Beaverton, Oregon and works as a Project Manager. When she is not reading she can be found: writing, painting or wreaking havoc on her house doing home repairs.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Atria/Emily Bestler Books No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.