A lawyer, an ex-con, and his nephew team up to solve a grisly murder in this explosive crime novel by internationally bestselling Swedish author Jens Lapidus.
When a house alarm goes off in Värmdö, an island in Stockholm’s archipelago, a security guard shows up expecting a break-in. But what he finds is far from ordinary: an unidentifiable body, brutally slaughtered. Complicating matters is the wounded young man he finds near the crime scene—a man who police will count as their prime suspect.
Emelie Jansson, a newly-minted lawyer at a top firm, takes on the young man’s case. By her side is Teddy, an ex-con trying to stay on the right side of the law as he works as the firm’s fixer. But Teddy has his own problems to worry about—namely his wayward nephew, who’s on the verge of following in his uncle’s criminal footsteps.
Who is the murder victim, and who is the murderer? And why do all roads seem to lead to Mats Emanuelsson, a man Teddy once kidnapped? As Emilie investigates, Teddy must confront his past and save his nephew from a troubled fate. Soon, all three get caught in a high-stakes game that threatens to undo their lives.
This gloomy crime novel from Lapidus (Easy Money and two other books his Stockholm Noir trilogy) focuses on Serbian immigrants. Teddy is trying to go straight after his release from prison where he served time for kidnapping Mats Emanuelsson, a one-time police informer now believed dead by working as a fixer for a law firm. Teddy's 19-year-old nephew, Nikola, who idolizes him, is just out of Spillersboda Young Offenders' Institute and is also trying to stay clean. Meanwhile, Teddy's coworker, newly minted lawyer Emelie Jansson, gets drawn into criminal defense work, against the rules of her upscale business law firm, by defending Mats's son against the charge that he murdered Mats. The complicated narrative unfolds through the viewpoints of Teddy, Nikola, and Emelie. Transcripts of police interrogations with Mats fill in the background. Lapidus tackles such matters as big-business fraud, police corruption, and refugee-related tensions in a dismal "new Stockholm," but interminable financial scheming bogs down what might have worked better as a fast-paced, action-oriented thriller.