In the heart-pounding next installment of the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling Department Q series, a terrifying international investigation reveals the complex backstory of one of the department's own—the enigmatic Assad.
The newspaper refers to the body only as Victim 2117—the two thousand one hundred and seventeenth refugee to die in the Mediterranean Sea. But to three people, the unnamed victim is so much more, and the death sets off a chain of events that throws Department Q, Copenhagen’s cold cases division led by Detective Carl Mørck, into a deeply dangerous—and deeply personal—case. A case that not only reveals dark secrets about the past, but has deadly implications for the future.
For troubled Danish teen Alexander, whose identity is hidden behind his computer screen, the death of Victim 2117 becomes a symbol of everything he resents and the perfect excuse to unleash his murderous impulses in real life. For Ghaalib, one of the most brutal tormentors from Abu Ghraib—Saddam Hussein’s infamous prison—the death of Victim 2117 is the first step in a terrorist plot years in the making. And for Department Q’s Assad, Victim 2117 is a link to his buried past—and the family he assumed was long dead.
With the help of the Department Q squad—Carl, Rose, and Gordon—Assad must finally confront painful memories from his years in the Middle East in order to find and capture Ghaalib. But with the clock ticking down to Alexander’s first kill and Ghaalib’s devastating attack, the thinly spread Department Q will need to stay one step ahead of their most lethal adversary yet if they are to prevent the loss of thousands of innocent lives.
In bestseller Adler-Olsen's suspenseful eighth Department Q novel featuring Copenhagen's cold-case division (after 2017's The Scarred Woman), journalist Joan Aiguader hopes to revive his reputation with coverage of the Syrian refugee crisis by focusing on an unidentified woman whose corpse washed up on Cyprus; the victim was the 2,117th person to drown in the Mediterranean that year. Those aspirations are dashed when Joan's editor reveals that the woman was actually fatally stabbed, a missed detail that embarrassed the newspaper that ran his story. Photos of those nearby at the time the body reached land leads Department Q mainstay Assad to believe that family members he thought dead are still alive. Meanwhile, a recluse has fixated on an image of Victim 2117 and begins calling the squad to announce that, once he's killed his 2,117th person in his violent online game, he will murder for real, triggering a desperate race to avoid bloodshed. Series fans will relish Assad's gripping backstory. Adler-Olsen does a masterly job juggling plotlines.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Not his best
I’m a big fan of this author and have read all of the Dept Q novels but this one fell quite far below the usual standard for this series. The writing and storyline both seemed forced and choppy, as if the author just wasn’t really into writing this book. If you’re a fan of the series you’ll have to read it to learn Assad’s long awaited backstory, but if the next in the series reads like this one did that would likely be the last I’d read. All of the other books leading up to this one were excellent and are highly recommend. Hope to see better things from this author in the future.
I am very sorry to say that this and the last 3 books are just so bad. There is no story and the translation is so crude and infantile. The first 4 books were so great and full of heart and humanity. I don’t know why such a drastic u-turn. Very disappointed.