Author: Lars Kepler, 2011. Translated from the Swedish by Laura A. Wideburg, 2013.
Genre: Crime Fiction. Police Procedural. Nordic Noir.
Other Details: Hardback. 495 pages.
One girl is dead. Detective Inspector Joona Linna has been called to a home for troubled girls, north of Stockholm. A young girl has been brutally murdered, her body arranged in bed with her hands covering her eyes. One girl is missing. Vicky Bennet is the only girl unaccounted for. Did she run away to escape the chaos or does a bloody hammer found under her pillow make her the prime suspect?
One girl claims to have witnessed it all. In Stockholm, Flora Hansen works as a medium, pretending to commune with the dead. When she begins to suffer crippling visions of the young girl’s murder, will anyone believe her? As Joona refuses to accept the easy answers, his search leads him into darker, more violent territory, and, finally, to a shocking confrontation with his past. - synopsis from UK publisher's website.
This was a very exciting dark crime thriller. Aside from the case described above, Joona Linna is also dealing with an official investigation into his controversial actions taken during the previous novel in this series, The Nightmare.
The Nightmare actually ended with an intriguing encounter between Joona and an elderly woman outside of an occult shop. This scene is repeated a few chapters into The Fire Witness and links to a secret from Joona's past. This secret is an important sub-plot in the novel and it appears that it will form the main premise for Book 4, The Sandman. Again, there is a final scene that sets up for this and so I can hardly wait until it is translated into English.