Missing
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Missing

3.63 of 5 stars 3.63  ·  rating details  ·  1,276 ratings  ·  142 reviews
In The Grand Hotel, a homeless woman charms a businessman into paying for dinner and a room. When his dead body is discovered the following morning she becomes the prime suspect. When a second person is killed in similar circumstances, Sybilla, having left her comfortable middle class upbringing for the anonymity of the streets, becomes the most wanted person in Sweden ......more
Paperback, 352 pages
Published May 31st 2004 by Canongate Books Ltd (first published 2000)
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Community Reviews

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Nancy Oakes
It seems to me that I really must have missed something, because I did not like this book. It could very well be me, because I look at Amazon or other places where this book's been rated, and people are just in awe over this book. It also got nominated for an Edgar award. This is probably the only Scandinavian mystery I've read in the last two years that I disliked.

The story goes something like this:
The main character, Sibylla Forsenstrom, is homeless, and when she gets desperate, scams wealthy...more
Yas
Wow.

I knew their was a reasom Scandanavian crime fiction was so well renowed. This waa absolutely brilliant.

Missing is different from the norm. Usually with your typical crime novel, the story is told through the perspective of some kind of law enforcement official not through the perspective of a suspect and an innocent suspect at that.

Sybylla is a homeless woman after having fallen out with the family some time ago. She had lived this existence for some time getting by in several ways. One of...more
Col
Oct 01, 2013 Col rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: a, 2013
Synopsis/blurb......

Sybilla Forsenstrom doesn't exist. For fifteen years she has been excluded from society and, as one of the homeless in Stockholm, she takes each day as it comes, keeping all her possessions in her rucksack - apart from a knife and salami which she stores in a smart briefcase. She is always well-dressed and displays impeccable manners. One night, in The Grand Hotel, she charms a susceptible businessman into paying for her dinner and room. His dead body is discovered the follow...more
Minty McBunny
Sweden & Norway's monarchies must be in a right state if all the book jackets declaring this person or that person 'The Queen of Crime!' are correct. In some cases (Camilla Läckberg, Karin Fossum) I'm not going to argue, but Karin Alvtegen is at best a Viscountess.

This book was entertaining enough, it was nice to have a story from the point of view of a suspect for a change from the police inspector's perspective. It was a bit stressful for me, as I have a fear of being wrongfully accused of...more
annik
Эта книга в другом издании называется «Утрата», где ей подобрана соответствующая картинка с женщиной в позе эмбриона. Может быть, читай я книгу в том оформлении, я бы воспринимала ее как психологическую драму, или, того и гляди, историю самокопания и утраты. Но для меня она – Wanted с указующим перстом на обложке.

Детективный триллер чистой воды. Главную героиню подставляют, она бежит, скрывается, находит подельника, по пути выясняет с ним отношения, докапывается до правды и поступает в конце абс...more
harryknuckles
Missing - Karin Alvtegen
Over recent years, Scandinavian crime writers have produced some of the most exciting and fresh contributions to the genre. And Karin Alvtegen's Missing seems to fit right in. Put aside two or three hours and read this book from beginning to end. It's a tense and involving read, and you won't want to be distracted. This novel gives us an in-depth portrait of the life of Sibylla Forsenström, a homeless Swedish woman.

Sibylla is the daughter of a rich but insensitive merchan...more
Emma
It could be me. I am just not sure I get on with crime fiction. It always seems to me it gives plot an undeserved ascendancy over character, observation, depth and good writing. I'm afraid this was no exception. The prose was flat, and while Sibylla was interesting, there seemed to be little subtlety to her character. I just didn't really believe in her or her rather melodramatically appalling childhood. The serial killer as religious maniac theme also struck me as hackneyed. The news stories we...more
Jan Derksen
Jul 12, 2012 Jan Derksen marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Sibylla Forsenström is op de vlucht, al bijna vijftien jaar. Niet alleen voor haar ouders, maar ook voor zichzelf. Ze is een van de vele daklozen in Stockholm. Maar Sibylla is anders. Als dochter van een welgesteld fabrikant weet ze hoe ze zich moet gedragen om niet op te vallen. Ze wil met rust gelaten worden. Dan slaat het noodlot toe. In het exclusieve Stockholmse Grand Hôtel wordt een man vermoord terwijl ook Sibylla er verblijft. Kort daarna wordt er een tweede dode gevonden, eveneens op be...more
Lucinda
Missing is the story of Sibylla Forenström, a 32-year old drifter on the streets of Stockholm. Dressed in her best thrift-store suit, Sibylla cons a wealthy businessman into buying her dinner and a hotel room in a fancy hotel. When the police arrive the next morning she assumes the con has been exposed and flees. But the man has been brutally murdered, and the police identify Sibylla’s fingerprints and charge her with the crime, revealing that she disappeared from a mental institution 15 years e...more
Monica
“Missing” is a good psychological thriller book with pages that are easy to turn. This novel wasn’t just about murder, it’s about what goes on in the mind of Sibylla Forsenström who, after a childhood of being tightly controlled, has decided to live her life without anyone telling her what to do. Being falsely accused of murders she didn’t commit, Sibylla finds that she has to let down her guard and trust a little so that she can prove her innocence. This is the first book I’ve read by Karin Alv...more
John
Sibylla came from a rich home, but an unwanted pregnancy, a forced adoption, a couple of nervous breakdowns and her bitch of a mother all combined to make life there intolerable, and for years she's been living rough on the streets of Stockholm. Except, that is, for those occasional nights when she can con someone into paying for her dinner and a room at one of the capital's swanky hotels.

And then along comes the morning when she wakes in just such a hotel to find the cops knocking on her door;...more
Deirdre
If you like your Scandinavian crime, you’ll like this one by Karin Alvtegen. Unusually told from the suspect’s perspective, it has the added twist of mental illness and parental cruelty thrown in. Though, to be honest, the parental cruelty angle is not the strongest…

What is interesting here is how it is possible to live life invisibly, how people who live on society’s fringes find each other and forge allegiances of convenience. Whether it’s the shambling tramp or her ex on a barge or the awkwar...more
Carey Combe
Can someone please tell me the point of including her mental illness and her parent's cruelty towards her? Yuo only needed a fraction of that information to understand why she was now sleeping rough and even then it didn't add anything to the story at all. And why did she think being 'caught' for scrounging a room was worse than being sought for murder - Unrealistic scenario's to move the plot along is my big bug bear.... Saying all that it could have been worse!!!.
Ellen Keim
A different take on the wrongly accused suspect on the run meme. The book didn't take very long to read, which was fine, except I think the story would have been better if it had been a bit more detailed. The climax came kind of abruptly and then the book ended. I liked the main character and would have liked the last part of the book to be more about what happens to her after the killer is finally caught and she is exonerated.
Adam
It doesn't make any sense to me. The first Alvtegen mystery I read, Betrayal, was a good thriller only really marred by an uninspired ending. But Missing is Alvtegen's most acclaimed novel, and it's a mess. For maybe the first quarter of the novel you can buy into the goings-on, but the plot gets increasingly more trite, more convenient, and more unlikely.
Leland
I was a bit surprised by this book. It was far less than I expected. There was something forced in the plot lines, heavy-handed and over-wrought in the scenes, and stylistically, the writing (or perhaps translating) was mainly disappointing. After reading some amazing Swedish crime fiction, I had high hopes. I found mediocrity.
Carlyn
The biggest mystery is why is this book listed as a mystery? To be honest I didn't finish the book. At page 147 I grew too impatient for the actual mystery to start. Within the first couple dozen pages you have a brutal murder then shortly thereafter you have a second brutal murder, then halfway through the book, still nothing else has been said about the murders or any attempt to solve them. The entire story is about a poor rich girl who chose to walk out of her life and live on the streets. Af...more
Helen
The first of her books I have read, and I can see why she is compared to Ruth Rendell. This is a psychological thriller rather than a police procedural, seen entirely from the point of view of a homeless, but originally wealthy, woman who due to being in the wrong place at the wrong time is suspected of a gruesome murder. I was put off at first because it seemed very similar to another book I read fairly recently, and I couldn't think what it was, but realised eventually that it was very like th...more
Susan Morrison
This is an exciting book. It is the story of Sibylla who is a 32 year old drifter who has been living on the streets since she fled a mental institution as an 18 year . She was committed as her behaviour became unstable after she was forced to give up her baby for adoption. Her current problem begins when the man she cons into buying her dinner and a room for the night is murdered. The police identify her by her fingerprints and Sibylla is forced into hiding. Other murders follow and she is blam...more
Renny
I almost could not read this story there was so much sadness, tragedy and cruelty in it... So much so that it affected the mental health of characters in such a way that they broke. Part of the message is that despite incredible scars and illness, life strives for healing and homeostasis. Part of the message is that behaviors of cruelty and abuse are passed on through generations ...yet one has a choice on whether to continue passing those patterns to new generations or work for the changes insi...more
WordsBeyondBorders
When we first see Sibylla, she is dining at the Grand Hotel's magnificent French dining room. She looks the part of the successful executive unwinding after a tough day at office. But why is her suit then having a false label (is she so concerned about appearances that she resorts to such falsehood?), why is the waist button of her skirt replaced by a safety-pin (if she can dine in such a posh hotel, couldn't she have put on a new dress before coming to dinner?), why is she thinking of stealing...more
Anna
Not exactly crime as it's not a procedural or a detective centered story. "Psychological thriller" sounds horrible as a description, but that fits a bit better. Imagine a Karin Fossum but without the detective and the police stuff and with some other twists, and it can get close. As in, as brilliant minds of the characters captured as Fossum can do.
Sibylla is an invisible person, a non-person, a homeless one, not exactly missed by anyone, that is trying to enjoy a night at a fancy hotel in Stock...more
Dorothy
Sep 20, 2011 Dorothy rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Lovers of Swedish mysteries
Recommended to Dorothy by: My Mystery Book Club
One of the nice things about joining the local Mystery Book Club has been that it has introduced me to some authors who were unknown to me and whose work I probably would never have picked up except for that impetus. Karin Alvtegen is another one of those. A Swedish writer of mysteries/thrillers, she does not seem to have found as wide an audience in this country as Stieg Larsson (Who has?) or Henning Mankell, but she's good and perhaps her time will come.

Alvtegen's protagonist, Sybilla, called...more
Maddy
Sibylla Forsenstrom had a life of privilege as compared to her schoolmates in a small town in Sweden. Her father headed the main local business. However, Sibylla's life was not all champagne and caviar. Her parents were emotionally abusive. Ultimately, she ended up in a mental institution as a result of her warring emotions, suffering from depression and an unwanted pregnancy. Sibylla's hatred of her parents rules her life. However, she is not at all reluctant to accept a monthly stipend from th...more
David
An interesting idea, and well written novel. it centres around a young woman called Sibylla Forstrom. She had good upbringing and strict social-climber of a mother. Her mother only wanted the best for for her, and Sibylla hated facing off with her, and climbing back down from arguments. Till it all came out in one disastrous Christmas works dinner.

We Sylla (as she calls herself) in ahotel restaurant alone, at a table.
She has on a green dress suit which she bought for a small amount, she's drinki...more
Γιώτα Παπαδημακοπούλου
Αν και αγαπώ την Σουηδική (και τη Σκανδιναβική γενικότερα), αστυνομική λογοτεχνία, το συγκεκριμένο βιβλίο δεν με κέρδισε και δεν καταφέρνει ούτε καν να αγγίξει άλλα βιβλία συγγραφέων της χώρας (βλ. συγγραφείς εκδόσεων Μεταίχμιο).
Η κεντρική ιδέα, είναι ενδιαφέρουσα, αν και δεν είναι προτότυπη. Πάντα, ιστορίες οι οποίες σχετίζονται με την φυγή και καταδίωξη ενός προσώπου, ειδικά όταν αυτό είναι αθώο και πρέπει να το αποδείξει, έχουν ανταπόκριση από το κοινό (πράγμα που έχει αποδειχθεί και στον κι...more
Hannah Fullmer
I really enjoyed this suspense novel, the first I have read by Sweden's "Queen of Crime," Karin Alvtegen.
Missing is the story of a homeless woman named Sibylla who is in the wrong place at the wrong time and ends up being charged with murder. She goes on the run, and eventually ends up trying to figure out who the real killer is.
Missing was an easy and fast read. What really hooked me initially were all the tricks that Sibylla had learned in order to survive on the streets. She is smart and res...more
Rennie Heza
I have read many thriller novels, and enjoyed most of them. However after reading Missing by Karin Alvtegen, my standards have been raised dramatically. The opening scene gripped me like no other. As cliche as it might sound, the first chapter of the novel left me with many clues, but no way to tie the story together. From then on, seemingly unimportant details added to the tale of Sybilla. Her dramatic change from a wealthy, single-child to a homeless "nobody" unfolds as another aspect of the s...more
Tom Carrico
Missing
Karen Alvtegen

This book starts out in a very unusual fashion. The main character is a young woman from a prominent family who has “dropped out” of civilization in defiance of her domineering mother and chooses to live life as a homeless vagabond. Occasionally she feels the need for a good meal and a hot bath and in the opening chapter we see Sybilla Forsenstrom con a gentleman in Stockholm’s Grand Hotel into buying her dinner and paying for her hotel room. She leaves the duped and frustra...more
Melinda Elizabeth
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The Queen of Crime in Scandinavia.

Missing was awarded the premier Scandinavian crime writing award the Glass Key in 2001 and was also nominated for the Poloni Award and Best Crime Novel 2000 in Sweden.

Shame was shortlisted for the Crime Writers' Association Duncan Lawrie International Dagger award for crime novels in translation upon publication in English.

Alvtegen lives in Stockholm. She is grand...more
More about Karin Alvtegen...
Betrayal Shame Shadow Skuld En sannolik historia

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