by Hammer, Lotte; Hammer, Søren; Barslund, Charlotte (TRN)

Konrad Simonsen uncovers a world of trafficking, prostitution and violence after a young woman, never reported missing, is discovered in a lake in North Copenhagen. By the best-selling authors of The Hanging.

Lotte and Søren Hammer are a sister and brother from Denmark who began writing crime novels together in 2004. To date, they have written six books in this series. The Lake is the fourth.

Charlotte Barslund translates Scandinavian novels and plays. Recent translations include The Son by Jo Nesbø.

This is the fourth Copenhagen detective Konrad Simonsen thriller (after The Vanished, 2016) from Danish sister and brother Lotte and Søren Hammer. Simonsen is as brilliant yet fallible as ever in a piece of Nordic noir that will leave readers chilled to the bone, even though it is set in spring and the thaw is on. Female remains are found by a hunting dog at a lake in a forest north of the city. The investigation runs head-on into the sex-trafficking underworld and its upper-class connections. The Lake scores highly as both a police procedural and an enthralling, sometimes appalling study of depravity and heartlessness. The Hammers' coppers are good and genuine people, in sharp contrast to the baser elements that lurk in the corners of Danish society. The ending is left somewhat open for the continued pursuit of one of the most deplorable characters, although many readers are likely to feel that this is one psycho we don't need to hear from again. Recommended for fans of Jussi Adler-Olsen, Stefan Ahnhem, Jo Nesbø, and, of course, Henning Mankell. Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

The fourth of the Hammer siblings' accounts of Danish skulduggery follows a human trafficking ring to its untidy but logical end.Identifying the skeletal remains of a young woman killed six months ago, her body dumped in a lake in Hanehoved Forest, is obviously going to be quite a challenge for Detective Superintendent Konrad "Simon" Simonsen (The Vanished, 2016, etc.) and his colleagues in the Copenhagen Homicide Department. It will take months before their painstaking, brick-by-brick investigation reveals what the reader has known all along: the dead woman, an uncooperative Nigerian teenager who'd been smuggled into Denmark and forced into prostitution, was accidentally killed in the middle of a punishment administered by Henrik Krag, a newcomer to this kind of work, while his more experienced partner, Jan Podowski, and Benedikte Lerche-Larsen, the boss's daughter, looked on. Simon and his crew deferentially interview Adam Blixen-Agerskjold, the chamberlain and gentleman fa rmer who owns the forest, and his lady, Lenette, before they develop a more serious interest in estate bailiff Frode Otto, whose four-year-old conviction for assault makes him a much more likely prospect. And indeed Otto, questioned by the police, smilingly confesses to three additional rapes on which the statute of limitations has run out. While Simon and company are running down unpromising leads, the tale keeps turning to Benedikte's hate/hate relationship with her father, poker and prostitution king Svend Lerche, and his helpmeet, Karina Larsen—who want to keep their daughter on a short leash even as they groom her to take over the family business—and her unlikely romance with Henrik Krag, which promises to be equally dysfunctional. The Hammers, who put the procedure in procedural, keep the pot simmering at such a low temperature you'll wonder if they've mistaken the fridge for the stovetop. The stubborn lack of momentum makes this one a natural for travelers on endless flights. Copyright Kirkus 2017 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

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