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The Return: An Inspector Van Veeteren Mystery (Inspector Van Veeteren #3)

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  4,287 Ratings  ·  256 Reviews
The author of Borkmann's Point spins a story that leaves even the most veteran crime novel readers chilled.
A new case for Chief Inspector Van Veeteren - the complicated history of a nearly perfect murder. On a sunny August day a man is released from prison. On a rainy April day children at play find his corpse. The fact that the dead man is Leopold Verhaven only becomes c
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published March 6th 2007 by Doubleday Canada (first published 1995)
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Rachel Hall
Apr 13, 2017 Rachel Hall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Return is the third outing in the highly acclaimed series featuring the grumpy and sardonic DCI Van Veeteren and whilst the suspense is admittedly fairly muted, a meticulously plotted case, deadpan humour and some prescient flashbacks will once again keep readers thoroughly entertained. Written in 1995 but not translated until 2007, the murder of a twice imprisoned man sees Van Veeteren in typical philosophical form, often bemusing his colleagues along the way.

Opening in August, 1993 with th
Ένα ανάλαφρο αστυνομικό μυθιστόρημα. Διαβάζεται πολύ εύκολα και γρήγορα. Βέβαια ο πρωταγωνιστής δεν νομίζω ότι είναι ολοκληρωμένος. Η γρήγορη ροή της πλοκής δεν σε αφήνει να κατανοήσεις και να συνδεθείς με τους χαρακτήρες. Επίσης, περίμενα ένα διαφορετικό τέλος. Πάντως θα διάβαζα και αλλα βιβλία αυτού του συγγραφέα.
Dimitris Passas
Σαφώς κατώτερο βιβλίο από τα προηγούμενα δύο. Υπέφερε σε πολλά σημεία, ειδικότερα όσον αφορά την πλοκή της ιστορίας, όπως και στο, αδιάφορο και εντελώς επίπεδο, φινάλε. Το σώζει η μοναδική φιγούρα του αρχιεπιθεωρητή Βαν Βέετερεν που εδώ περνάει μια προσωπική περιπέτεια με την υγεία του με αποτέλεσμα να βρίσκεται στο νοσοκομείο και σε διαδικασία ανάρρωσης κατά το πρώτο μισό του βιβλίου. Από την στιγμή που παίρνει εξιτήριο και αναλαμβάνει δράση βέβαια, συνθέτει με επιτυχία τα κομμάτια του πάζλ και ...more
The Return by Hakan Nesser.

Inspector Van Veeteren is scheduled for surgery. A portion of his colon is coming out due to cancer. A body has been found in a wooded area of a small quiet town. A body with no arms, legs or head. Who this person was has the whole dept; perplexed including Van Veeteren.

The Inspector starts attempting to organize the pieces of information he's given by Munster while still in recovery after the surgery. Who this victim turns out to be and what became of his life prior
Nov 16, 2015 Thomas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2015
Ένα απλό και ξεκάθαρο αστυνομικό, ιδανικό για μένα αυτή την εποχή. Οι χαρακτήρες μου φάνηκαν πολύ καλοί και το τέλος αρκετά ικανοποιητικό. Θα διαβάσω σίγουρα και τα υπόλοιπα του Nesser.
For some bizarre reason I started listening to this book while mowing a couple of summers ago and then dropped it and only recently came back to it. Bizarre because it’s it’s a good mystery with some bizarre events glued together by Chief Inspector Van Veetteren, known to his colleagues as “VV.” (When someone calls and asks to speak with a particular inspector on the case but can’t remember the name, he says, “you know, the unpleasant one, the really, really unpleasant one". He is immediately pu ...more
Fenia Vazaka
Αρκετά καλό και ευκολοδιάβαστο. Ο επιθεωρητής Βαν Βέτερεν είναι ο ήρωας που συμπαθείς, αλλά ταυτόχρονα σε εκνευρίζει όσο δεν πάει. Η υπόθεση είναι ενδιαφέρουσα, γιατί συνειδητοποιείς ότι ένας αθώος καταδικάστηκε για 2 φόνους και έζησε την μισή του ζωή στη φυλακή. Και το ακόμη πιο δύσκολο είναι να αποδειχθεί τώρα αυτό και να τιμωρηθεί ο αληθινός ένοχος. Η δικαιοσύνη έρχεται μεν στο τέλος, αλλά με τρόπο απρόσμενο. Η αλήθεια είναι ότι δεν πάει το μυαλό σου για το ποιος μπορεί να το έκανε.
Μόνο αρνη
Jul 31, 2014 J. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, scandia
Questions, questions, and more questions. A never-ending procession of conversations and interviews and interrogations, every one of them at first glance just as pointless and unproductive as the last, auntil that important detail emerged. Most often when one least expected it. That link, that little unexpected reply . . .That sudden but faintly glowing sign in the darkenss that one couldn't afford to overlook. It was important not to rush past it in this overgrown thicket of irrelevant and tir
May 10, 2009 Tony rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Nesser, Hakan. THE RETURN. (1995; U.S.-2007). *****. This was the second in the Inspector Van Veeteren mystery series published in the States. This time, Van Veeterren, a crusty, 57-year-old policeman on an urban Swedish force is facing a hospital stay for an operation to remove a portion of his colon. He has cancer. Although the prognosis is good, he is truly upset, though he tries not to show it. Showing it would mean giving up some of his crustiness. Just as he is about to undergo the procedu ...more
Apr 25, 2010 Ali rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010, mystery
I've been reading a lot of Scandinavian mystery novels recently (who knew there were enough of them to constitute an actual genre?) but this wasn't one of my favorites.

I had a hard time keeping track of all of the people in the book (which wasn't entirely necessary, but distracted me all the same) because none of them really had any characteristics beyond "detective," "witness," "victim." I'm sure this would be easier if I followed the whole series through, though.

I also found the jumps from one
Apr 28, 2012 Gail rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
Another fast paced, brilliant thriller from Hakan Nesser and his superb creation, the wonderfully grumpy Van Veeteren.

The twists and turns are like a roller coaster ride, just as I have come to expect from this utterly fantastic writer. This book is the third in the series which has been translated into English, but I think there are a few more in the intervening period which haven't, which is a shame really as they haven't really been released in order. No matter though, as these are utter clas
Oct 18, 2010 Bill rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have mixed feelings about this mystery, the 3rd Chief Inspector Van Veeteren mystery. It moved along nicely and I liked the cast of characters. The first part of the book featured the other police inspectors as Van Veeteren is in the hospital after having undergone surgery to remove part of his intestine. He follows the investigation via reports from one of the other inspectors. The book moves back and forth from the present, the investigation, to the past, various time frames, various people, ...more
Beth K.
The two Van Veeteren mysteries that I've read so far are pretty good. The characters are well developed, the plot unfolds slowly but interestingly, and the settings are well-described. But here's the real reason I read them, and will continue to do so....

Irmgaard Gellnacht
Uleczka Willmot
Katrina Berenskaya
Jurg Eschenmaa
Claus Menhevern
Andrea Valgre
Bert Schmaa
Judge Heidelbluum
Leopold Verhaven
Dr. Boegenmutter

Neuwe Blatt

Awesome, right?!
This book introduces a concept I've not seen before, "Klimke's Razor". Klimke's Razor is a simple guideline for civilized and intelligent behavior: "you can not demand more of any person you are talking to (in a civilized conversation) than you are prepared to give yourself."

Regardless on what is learned, mysteries by Swedish authors should be relished for their own sake.
Stephen Lawton
Very hard to see past the overt misogyny in this book from the murderer who kills because his wife is unable to have sex with him and other women reject him to the returned innocent prisoner who thinks his various girlfriends want him to beat them. Van Veeteren's treatment of one of the nursing staff as little more than a drinks slave was also very unpalatable.
Giorgos Christoforakis
Δεν υποτίθεται οτι στα αστυνομικά μυθιστορήματα θα 'πρεπε να μη μαντεύεις τόσο εύκολα το φιναλε;; (λέω εγώ τώρα...)
2 αστεράκια και πολλά του είναι...
Maria João Fernandes
"Nem tudo é o que parece."

Em "The Return", o terceiro livro da série do sueco Håkan Nesser, o Inspector Van Veeteren prepara-se para ser internado no hospital onde irá ser operado a um cancro nos intestinos, quando um corpo sem mãos, pés e cabeça é encontrado no bosque. Inicialmente, o problema é identificar o cadáver, que esteve enrolado durante mais ou menos 8 meses, num tapete. Depois de conhecido o nome, segue-se a caça ao culpado.

É a partir da cama do hospital que Van Veeteren lidera esta i
Nov 27, 2009 Maddy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2007-reads
SETTING: Small seacost town in Sweden

Up until recently, the average American mystery reader didn't have the ability to read many non-US mystery books other than those written by authors in the United Kingdom or Canada. The publishing industry has gone in new directions; and it is becoming common to see books from Scandinavia, Iceland and other "exotic" places in the States. Last year, the award-winning book BORKMANN'S POINT by Swedish author Haka
Dec 02, 2011 Anna rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read Borkmann's Point earlier, and thought I'd give inspector Van Veeteren and the series another try. Maybe in Borkmann's Point I just got overly easily annoyed by a number of things (such as these). Well, I gave the inspector and the series another try with the Return, and this book would score equally, around 2.75 stars.

What annoyed me in this book was mostly what annoyed me in the previous book. The people felt odd (not like Scandinavian type odd either, I've worked with a bunch of them).
Apr 24, 2010 Chip rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good points: interesting characters abound! Exotic locales (at least it seems that way in this pedestrian backwater I call home)! Several laugh out loud moments when you least expect them.

Bad points: the Dutch-to-English translation wasn't all there in a few places... whatever the author wrote didn't make the leap into the new language here and there, but not in a way that detracted from the story at all; I just wish there had been one more English-speaking editor reviewing the copy before it we
Nancy Oakes
The Return is the second book (at least in the US) by Hakan Nesser, and continues the story of Inspector Van Veeteren, a very wise detective who has pretty much seen it all. As the story opens, the Inspector is in the hospital having surgery. A decapitated torso, also minus its hands and feet, was discovered by a little girl during a pre-school class outing in the woods. There is one telltale piece of physical evidence that may identify the body and it turns out to be a recently-released murdere ...more
Linda  Branham Greenwell
Chief Inspector Van Veeteren is ill and having surgery, but participates in solving the crime from his hospital bed.
A man is found murdered with his head cut off and his arms. the first part of the mystery is finding out who he is. The inspectors believe it is Verhaven - a man convicted of murderer and who had served two separate stretches of twelve years for killing two young women. Verhaven was a loner who was once a record-breaking middle distance runner, but was caught cheating and stripped
May 31, 2010 Pamela rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Hakan Nesser's Inspector Van Veeteren has something in common with P.D. James' Inspector Adam Dalgleish: neither is fully a team player - either with their fictional colleagues or their non-fictional audience. They both solve crimes with flashes of intuitive insight and/or secretive deductive reasoning that is never explained to their colleagues or shared with us, the readers (who would surely like to be able to figure out whodunnit themselves?) until the suspect has been nabbed. The things they ...more
Jun 07, 2014 Tahmeena rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very nice, slow-burning novel! I find myself liking Van Vetereen more and more with each book! His inner reflections are very profound but not smug or tedious! He is cranky, funny, and super sharp...a very likable fellow indeed! And he also has an abundance of empathy for misunderstood characters, which he doesn't even realize that he has, making him even more awesome! :-)
The plot was interesting with Verhaven being a pretty fascinating character study! I would have liked a bit more insight into
The mystery itself--a twice-convicted murderer is killed shortly after being released from prison--was solid, but the translation was choppy. Or perhaps it wasn't the translation, but the author's writing style I found to be disconcerting. It often seemed as if relevant paragraphs or clauses in sentences were missing, which caused me to go back and re-read earlier pages to see if I had missed something. I do have some affection for the chief detective, van Veeteren, who wrestles with a heavy-dut ...more
Amit Tiwary
Jun 18, 2015 Amit Tiwary rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015-books
Scandinavian crime writers are top of their genre. Brilliant Jo Nesbo, equally brilliant Henning Mankell, and Maestro Hakan Nesser. Fast faced crime fictions and great characterization. Harry Hole/Kurt Wallander/Van Veeteren. All are extremely likable characters.

This particular book is a good read but did it really sound that brilliant like Mind's Eye or Borkmann's point? Probably not. It is bit wordy, drags here and there, and too much back and forth between past and present. Did it loose out
Carolyn (in SC) C234D
I also enjoyed the author's Borkmann's Point, featuring Inspector Van Veeteren and company. I like the style and the characterizations, and the little bit of humor that occasionally surfaces. Two of the policemen are in a car, the driver pulls out to pass someone, and is facing a truck -- "Munster [the passenger] closed his eyes, and on opening them again was able to establish that they had made it." You see the cops as people, while not going deeply into their personal lives. Van Veeteren bring ...more
Naomi Blackburn
Jun 09, 2010 Naomi Blackburn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There will be absolutely no hint of spoilers in Nesser reviews from me! I found Nesser books after running out of Karin Fossum books to read. Nesser's writing is excellent and does an unbelievable job at sucking the reader in to the twisted story being laid out. For some reason, in the majority of Scandanavian mystery writers I have found, their ability to do that is second to no other countries mystery writers. The only criticism I have is that I am not happy about with Nesser's books is that i ...more
Dave Riley
May 02, 2012 Dave Riley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-fiction
Another enthralling visit with Chief Inspector Van Veeteren. Very 'police procedural' and I'm keen on that -- especially the Scandinavian way with procedurals. Taking its own time to unfold while using some radical approaches to the story telling Nesser sends Van Veeteren off stage for much of the novel to recover from bowel surgery.

I loved it.

The translation from the original Swedish is also very good so that the sequences really register as what's happening is located with some very interest
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Goodreads Librari...: Please add details to ISBN 9788770532792 2 7 Feb 09, 2017 07:54AM  
chilling story 1 12 May 06, 2010 04:15AM  
  • The Cruel Stars of the Night
  • The Torso (Inspector Huss #3)
  • The Shadow Woman (Inspector Winter #2)
  • Unspoken (Anders Knutas, #2)
  • Arctic Chill (Inspector Erlendur #7)
  • The Man Who Went Up in Smoke (Martin Beck, #2)
  • Don't Look Back (Inspector Konrad Sejer, #2)
  • The Blood Spilt (Rebecka Martinsson, #2)
Håkan Nesser is a Swedish author and teacher who has written a number of successful crime fiction novels. He has won Best Swedish Crime Novel Award three times, and his novel Carambole won the Glass Key award in 2000. His books have been translated from Swedish into numerous languages.

Håkan Nesser was born and grew up in Kumla, and has lived most of his adult life in Uppsala. His first novel was p
More about Håkan Nesser...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Van Veeteren (10 books)
  • Mind's Eye (Inspector Van Veeteren #1)
  • Borkmann's Point (Inspector Van Veeteren #2)
  • Woman with Birthmark (Inspector Van Veeteren #4)
  • The Inspector and Silence (Inspector Van Veeteren #5)
  • Münsters Fall (Inspector Van Veeteren #6)
  • Hour of the Wolf (Inspector Van Veeteren #7)
  • Der Tote vom Strand. (Inspector Van Veeteren #8)
  • Die Schwalbe, die Katze, die Rose und der Tod (Inspector Van Veeteren #9)
  • Sein letzter Fall (Inspector Van Veeteren #10)

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“Or so he understood it. If you have twelve treasured memories, his Uncle Arndt had once said as Münster sat on his knee, you will have led a happy life.” 0 likes
“Isn't that what usually happens? You know who did it, but you have to work your butts off to the knowledge into proof.” 0 likes
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