A YOUNG WOMAN IS DISCOVERED hanged in a room in a decrepit hotel, and Gothenburg’s Chief Inspector Erik Winter must try to figure out what happened. As Winter looks around, he realizes that he was in the same hotel room many years earlier, when it was the last known location of a woman who subsequently disappeared and was never found. The two women seem to have nothing in common except for this hotel room, but Winter suspects that there may be other connections.
The young woman’s parents are bereft and unable to explain the puzzling contents of a note she left behind. Winter, however, senses that they are holding back some secret that might help him to find her murderer. As he pursues his hunch and digs into the old police report on the woman who disappeared—one of his first cases as a young detective—Winter becomes increasingly convinced that the two cases are somehow related. Room No. 10 is a first-rate thriller, suffused with the gray seaside beauty of Gothenburg and filled with the characters that Åke Edwardson’s readers have come to love: Winter, the veteran detective who veers between pessimism and optimism but never gives up; Bertil Ringmar, the methodical old-timer whose analytical mind keeps everyone focused; hotheaded Fredrik Halders, whose temper sometimes overwhelms his passion for justice; and Aneta Djanali, Halders’s girlfriend, an immigrant from Burkina Faso whose ability to talk to other women can open new leads. As compelling as they are dedicated, they are an unforgettable team determined to find a bizarre killer.
Meticulous observation and persistent psychological analysis can find solutions that not even modern forensics can provide, as shown in Edwardson s intricate seventh novel featuring Chief Insp. Erik Winter (after 2012 s Sail of Stone). When the body of 29-year-old Paula Ney is discovered hanging in Room 10 of Gothenburg s sleazy Hotel Revy, an obvious murder victim, despite a mystifying suicide note, Winter recalls that 29-year-old Ellen B rge disappeared in a case involving the Hotel Revy 18 years earlier and never seen again. Painstaking police work, including endless interviews with Ney s oddly unemotional parents, alternate with Winter s recollections of the earlier case and the beginnings of his working relationship with Det. Insp. Fredrik Halders. The old and new investigations intertwine and merge in a fascinating fashion. This is a must-read for those who appreciate psychologically astute mysteries, though readers should be prepared for repetitive dialogue and relatively little action.