Maud is an irascible 88-year-old Swedish woman with no family, no friends, and... no qualms about a little murder. This funny, irreverent story collection by Helene Tursten, author of the Irene Huss investigations, features two-never-before translated stories that will keep you laughing all the way to the retirement home.
Ever since her darling father's untimely death when she was only eighteen, Maud has lived in the family's spacious apartment in downtown Gothenburg rent-free, thanks to a minor clause in a hastily negotiated contract. That was how Maud learned that good things can come from tragedy. Now in her late eighties, Maud contents herself with traveling the world and surfing the net from the comfort of her father's ancient armchair. It's a solitary existence, and she likes it that way.
Over the course of her adventures—or misadventures—this little bold lady will handle a crisis with a local celebrity who has her eyes on Maud's apartment, foil the engagement of her long-ago lover, and dispose of some pesky neighbors. But when the local authorities are called to investigate a dead body found in Maud's apartment, will Maud finally become a suspect?
The five stories in this exceptional collection from Tursten (the Irene Huss mysteries) feature Maud, a seemingly mild-mannered 88-year-old Gothenburg resident who's perfectly willing to use wiles and sometimes deadly force to defend her independent lifestyle. In the delightful "An Elderly Lady Has Accommodation Problems," a pushy neighbor has designs on Maud's apartment, and that can't be tolerated. When a gold digger hooks an old beau of Maud's in "An Old Lady on Her Travels," Maud decides to intervene, showing that she's also ready to right wrongs that threaten others. Perhaps the best entry is "An Elderly Lady Seeks Peace at Christmas Time," in which Maud cleverly puts a young clerk in his place and rids herself of an abusive neighbor. In the last two tales, she deals ruthlessly with a greedy antique dealer. Readers will be amused by how sharp-as-a-tack Maud plays the forgetful, fuzzy-brained old lady to achieve her ends. With any luck, she'll be back for an encore.