Would it be overly dramatic (and in true literary form) to declare “Winter is coming”? Okay, maybe a little dramatic. At best, fall is approaching and it’s really advancing at more of a crawl, judging from the 90 degree temperatures that we’re still experiencing here. But fall (or at least the idea of fall) has got me in a mystery / thriller sort of mood. There’s something about the air growing crisper, the sun setting sooner and the shutdown of the natural world that draws you to an easy chair with a thick book and cup of something hot and spiced. And what better way to send figurative chills down your spine than a good mystery novel?
I will admit, I’m a bit of a skeptic when it comes to mysteries. I find it difficult to find a good mystery novel–either the mystery itself is not that mysterious or the storyline found wanting. In The Keeper of Lost Causes, the first of the Danish Department Q series by Jussi Adler-Olsen, you find a mystery with a tightly woven story and characters that keep you pinned to the pages. Oh it’s got some of your typical cast and crew of police detectives–the gritty loner policeman with his own agenda and hard-hitting methods of finding answers and the beautiful damsel in distress. Adler-Olsen’s characters are not one-dimensional though. His detective is not adverse to a bit of change, however it may land in his lap, and his victims may also surprise you.
Without giving anything away, which is difficult to do in a mystery book review, I believe this book is the first mystery novel I’ve read that has made me think about double-bolting my door at night. And right after finishing the very last page, I was already ordering the second one in the series.
PS – How can you deny an author who has this picture on his website?