In the seventh installment of the Hanne Wilhelmsen series “that demands to be read—and the more quickly, the better” (Bookreporter), the brilliant female detective must untangle the complex and bitter history of one of Oslo’s wealthiest families after a celebratory get-together ends in a shocking multivictim homicide.
Shortly before Christmas, four people are found shot dead at the home of the Stahlbergs, a wealthy Oslo family of shipping merchants notorious for their miserliness and infighting. Three of the victims are members of the family, and the fourth is an outsider, seemingly out of place. Cake had been set out in the living room and a bottle of champagne had been opened but not yet poured. Yes, family gatherings during the holidays can be difficult, but why did this one become a bloodbath?
As Hanne Wilhelmsen investigates the case alongside her longtime police partner, Billy T., motives for the murders emerge in abundance; each surviving member of the Stahlberg family had good reason to want the victims dead. As she searches for the killer, Hanne will once again risk everything to find out the truth. But this time, will she go too far?
“When you think of Scandinavian noir, names like Stieg Larsson, Henning Mankell, and Camilla Lackberg probably come to mind, not Anne Holt. That may be about to change….Holt consistently delivers in her series. And Beyond the Truth…is her best yet…If you aren’t familiar with Anne Holt’s Hanne Wilhelmsen novels…dive in with this one—number 7—but then do yourself a favor and binge-read the first six” (Entertainment Weekly).
The quadruple homicide of shipping magnate Hermann Stahlberg; his wife, Turid; their elder son, Preben; and a publishing consultant with no apparent ties to the family kicks off Edgar-finalist Holt's solid seventh Hanne Wilhelmsen novel to be published in the U.S. (after No Echo). Suspicion falls on Preben's surviving siblings, Hermine and Carl-Christian, as they've been battling with Hermann and Preben for control of Norne Norway Shipping. But while the duo has motive, means, and opportunity, Hanne is convinced that the mysterious fourth victim is the key to solving the crime. Despite intense pressure from the public and her superiors to quickly close the case, the Oslo chief inspector launches her own investigation. Meanwhile, Hanne's best friend and colleague, Billy T., fights temptation in the face of money problems. Realistically flawed characters, nuanced relationships, and thematically resonant subplots complement the central mystery, while Hanne's housekeeper an irreverent former prostitute adds unexpected humor and heart.