Barbara Fister, In the Wind (2008)

This novel is not the American writer´s debut, but the first in the Anni Koskinen series (as a couple of my brilliant readers guessed).

What I noticed first was the language:

“The grass here is brown and sparse. Broken roots reach like bony fingers through the newly dug earth and a cracked drain pipe drips rusty water. Two men unload the boxes and lower them in, nudging them close together to save space. Each box has a round brass tag nailed to one end – no names, just numbers.”

The first-person narrator is Anni Koskinen herself:

“From an early age, I had known exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I would join the police force and become a detective based at Area 4 headquarters, finding the bad guys, helping the victims. No one who died on the streets would be buried without a name or a story, not if I was working the case.”

But reality is very different, and as Anni has problems with police brutality and dishonesty, she leaves the force to become a private investigator. In this excellent mystery, she wants to help a Catholic priest in Chicago by driving a woman to Minnesota. Afterwards it turns out she has helped a fugitive escape from the police. The members of the church regard her as a saint, others believe she killed an FBI agent back in the seventies.

It is not often that I fall for a series when I read the first volume, but in this case I was sold immediately. Anni is an intelligent detective with lots of integrity – besides she struck me as a woman I would like to have as a friend. Warning: this series may be strongly addictive!

A blog friend sent her copy on to me.

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 American, Barbara Fister, review, review 2011. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Barbara Fister, In the Wind (2008)

  1. Kelly says:

    This sounds like a strong recommendation and perhaps one I should follow.

  2. Margot Kinberg says:

    Dorte – What a terrific review! I’m so glad you highlighted the language used in this novel because it really is done very well. I like the character of Anni very much, myself, so I’m glad you do, too, but the language, I must say, was what drew me in at first.

  3. Addictive, eh? Sounds like something I should read. Thanks for the review. So that’s where the quote from the previous post came from…

  4. Joanne says:

    Sounds appealing, and like Margot, the writing reeled me in first. A good one to add to my list. Thanks for the review.

  5. Petty Witter says:

    Wonderfully descriptive writing, I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for this one.

  6. Kelly: I am sure you´d enjoy it. I was sold from the first page.
    Margot: well, of course you had to have read this one – as you seem to have read everything, I don´t know how YOU can have a TBR 😉
    Clarissa: terribly addictive, even. Don´t say I didn´t warn you.
    Joanne: I can accept second-rate writing if plot & characters are first-rate, but it is so much better when you enjoy all aspects of a novel.
    Tracy: great. She deserves a wider readership.

  7. KerrieS says:

    Dorte, the title is IN THIS WIND

  8. Kerrie: I think you must be mixing it up with another one. This one is certainly called In the Wind.

  9. kathy d. says:

    I validate it is In the Wind; MacMillan Publ. says so, the author says so, Amazon says so — oh, if Amazon does, it must be so!!!

  10. Barbara says:

    Dorte, wow – thank you for reading it, and for the kind words. I’m working on the third, but it’s slow. I might have been able to do that book a year thing ten years ago, but they take longer to gestate now. And there is that job (which I’m glad to have – especially these days.)

    I know it’s hard to find. The used copies at Amazon UK are mostly shipping from the US, so I imagine that gets expensive; Macmillan finally did an e-book version, but it seems not to be available except through US vendors. Which is silly. But if you read Finnish you can get it in that language from Nemo. I’m sure that’s reassuring.

    The second (Through the Cracks) is not much easier to find overseas. Dorte, DM me and I’ll see if I can get you a copy if you like (though you are certainly not short of reading material, and you also need time for writing. And blogging! Must make time for that!)

    The title is easy to confuse – especially once you’ve read S.J. Rozan’s In This Rain. Maybe those prepositional phrases are not how to come up with a memorable and easily searched title. You’d think a librarian would be able to figure that out :-/

  11. Kathy: never mind Amazon, my book says “In the Wind” 😉

    Barbara: I am hardly ever won over by the first in a series (not even writers such as Håkan Nesser) so it is a rare thing for me to be bowled over immediately. And I know quite a bit about juggling work, writing and an aging brain 😉
    I have checked the prices of Through the Cracks (not too terrible) so I´ll get round to that one eventually. I just love to space out the series I enjoy.

  12. Barbara says:

    I’m with you there. And just as well, as I am a slow writer. :-/

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