>Åsa Larsson, Sort Sti (2006)

>Oversat fra svensk (Svart stig, 2006)

”Jeg må ikke blive her. Har optaget en plads længe nok. Der findes kvinder, der har mere brug for den. Den slags, der sætter ild til deres hår. Som kommer ind på afdelingen og sluger små stykker spejlglas ude på toilettet, og som skal køres på skadestuen i en allerhelvedes fart hele tiden. Jeg kan tale, svare, stå op om morgenen og børste tænder.”

Ved begyndelsen af tredje bog er Rebecka Martinsson indlagt på psykiatrisk afdeling, traumatiseret efter sine oplevelser i ”Blodskyld”. Men så snart hun ikke regnes for at være til overhængende fare for sig selv eller andre, udskrives hun til den åbne afdeling i Kiruna.

Plottet bliver skudt i gang på fin vis med en dramatisk scene på en tilfrossen sø. En skødesløs fisker er lige ved at komme helt galt af sted i kulden. Han formår at redde sig selv, men finder til gengæld liget af en 40-årig kvinde i et fiskeskur. Makkerparret Anna-Maria Mella og Sven-Erik Stålnacke kaster sig ud i sagen med begejstring – endelig noget spændende at rive i. Sven-Erik fordi han er enlig og endda har mistet sin elskede kat. Anna-Maria, fordi hun ganske vist er lykkeligt gift og mor til fire, men alligevel nyder chancen for at sætte tænderne i en rigtig god mordsag. I det hele taget er Åsa Larsson rigtig god til personkarakteristik, ligesom hun gør en sidehistorie om samisk kultur rigtig interessant.

Rebecka bliver ansat som politifuldmægtig af den sympatiske menneskekender Alf Björnfot, og kaster sig ud i en tilværelse, som ikke byder på meget andet end arbejde – det eneste i livet hun kan overskue at forholde sig til. Det viser sig, at den myrdede kvinde var ansat i en større svensk virksomhed, og her kommer Rebeckas viden om virksomhedsret til stor nytte for Anna-Maria. Og for første gang kommer de to kvinder lidt tættere på hinanden.

Nogle anmeldere har kritiseret denne bog for at Rebeckas problemer og sammenbrud fylder for meget. Jeg synes egentlig, Rebecka klarer sig flot efter omstændighederne, men jeg har en anden grund til ikke at være ovenud begejstret. Midt i bogen udvikler plottet sig til en større sag med internationale selskaber, konspirationer og minevirksomhed i Uganda. Desuden er den meget dramatiske udvikling mod slutningen af bogen meget hårdkogt og usvensk. Som der står på bagsiden: ”barsk og actionfyldt spændingsroman”. Hver sin smag, men det er nu ikke den type plot, som interesserer mig mest.

Også anmeldt på dansk af Louise, Bogsider

Åsa Larsson, Black Path (2008)
Swedish novel, first published in 2006.

“I´m not allowed to stay here. I´ve taken up a place for long enough. There are women who need it more than me. The kind who set fire to their hair. Who come onto the ward and swallow pieces of broken mirrors in the toilets, and have to be rushed into the emergency department all the time. I can talk, answer questions, get up in the mornings and brush my teeth.”

At the beginning of the third book Rebecka Martinsson is committed to a psychiatric ward, traumatized after her experiences in “The Blood Spilt”. But as soon as she is not considered an impending danger to herself or anyone else, she is discharged and transferred to a clinic in Kiruna.

The plot takes off really well with a dramatic scene on a frozen lake. A careless angler nearly gets himself killed in the cold during a call of nature. He manages to save himself, but finds the body of a fortyish woman in a small fishing cabin. The partners Anna-Maria Mella and Sven-Erik Staalnacke plunge into the case, Sven-Erik because he is single and has even lost his dear cat. Anna-Maria because, even though she is happily married and the mother of four, she enjoys the chance of sinking her teeth into a real murder case. On the whole Åsa Larsson is really good at portraying her characters, just as her flashbacks about Sami culture are fine.

Rebecka is employed as a prosecutor by the sympathetic judge of character Alf Björnfot, and engages in her work – the only part of her life she can relate to. The murdered woman was employed by a major Swedish company, thus Rebecka´s experience with business law comes in handy for Anna-Maria, and the two women get a bit closer for the first time.

Some reviewers think that Rebecka´s problems and break-down take up too much space in this book. Actually I think Rebecka copes with her traumatic experiences quite well, but I am not quite as enthusiastic about the plot which grows into an international affair with mining companies in Uganda, hitmen and conspiracies. The quite dramatic ending is hard-boiled and non-Swedish. As it says on the blurb, “tough and action-filled thriller.” Not quite the type of plot I prefer, and not ´femikrimi´ at all.

Also reviewed in English by Norman, Crime Scraps, and Maxine’s Book Reviews

About Dorte Hummelshøj Jakobsen

I am a Danish teacher. In my spare time I read, write and review crime fiction.
This entry was posted in Åsa Larsson, review, Swedish. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to >Åsa Larsson, Sort Sti (2006)

  1. >Thanks for the mention Dorte.

  2. Dorte H says:

    >You are welcome, Norman.

  3. Barbara says:

    >I was very disappointed in the ending – seemed as if a film crew from Hollywood moved in and took over the story. In fact, the word I used in a review was “preposterous.” Which was too bad as there’s much to like about the book. The ending of Sun Storm is over the top, too, but not in quite such a Hollywood style.

  4. Dorte H says:

    >Preposterous – quite a precise term for it 🙂 And a bit disappointing as she should be able to do better than that.

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