Saturday, June 2, 2012

Unwanted

Unwanted
Author: Kristina Ohlsson
Atria/Emily Bestler Books, 2012
368 pages

When a six year-old girl disappears from a high speed train on the way to Stockholm, legendary investigator Alex and his team spring into action. Fredrika is an academic who's fairly new to working with the police, and her colleagues don't yet appreciate her analytical skills. Peder, a law enforcement professional, is one who definitely thinks Fredrika is in the wrong place. But the three of them have work to do, so the investigation begins.

Turns out the girl's parents have split, and there's been a custody battle. Soon it comes to light that the girl's father had frequently abused her mother. Everyone is looking for the father so they can question him, but he's nowhere to be found. Naturally, he becomes suspect number one -- until the missing girl is found dead in a town some 600km to the north of Stockholm.

It's a page-turner. I read the last 40% in one sitting, not caring at all that I had to get up early the next morning to go to work. :)

Ohlsson does a great job of weaving social issues such as domestic violence and mental illness into the story.  Some of the characters are creepy. Really creepy. Yet if you take a look at their backgrounds and life experiences, they're creepy because someone made them that way. 

Apparently, Unwanted is the first book in a series. The other books aren't yet available in the USA, but I'll be on the lookout because I'm definitely interested in reading more by this author!