Sunday, January 2, 2011

BOOK: The Man on the Balcony by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo

The Man on the Balcony by Maj Sjowall and Per Wahloo, 180 pages

book 3 of 10 from the Martin Beck Mysteries (read in December)

A mystery set in June 1967 (written in 1967) in a sweltering Stockholm, Sweden. Fans of the old 87th precinct books by Ed McBain will love this series as well. A police procedural told from the detectives point of view, for the most part. It shows the dogged work, the chance effect of some good luck, and the beginnings of profiling, as the police try to find the killer of several young girls before more are killed. Beck is called back from a vacation, and while his name is in the series title, he didn't play a huge role, other police officers seem just as important. However, I liked the back story for all the cops, and look forward to following how they develop.

The writing is sparse and efficient, as you'd expect from the police point of view. There were references made to a previous case of Martin Beck's that I hope to discover in the earlier books. This series appears to have been re-released, and my library has ordered them all, so expect to see more reviews of this series. The authors are a married couple, and this renown Swedish series is called The Story of a Crime.