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Mind's Eye (Inspector Van Veeteren #1)

3.61 of 5 stars 3.61  ·  rating details  ·  4,394 ratings  ·  388 reviews
International Bestseller

Håkan Nesser is firmly established as one of the world's bestselling crime novelists. And now the novel that introduced Chief Inspector Van Veeteren is available for the first time in English.



The swift conviction left Van Veeteren uneasy: Janek Mitter woke one morning with a brutal hangover and his wife dead in the bathtub. With only the flimsiest d
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Paperback, 288 pages
Published June 16th 2009 by Vintage (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Ellie
I loved Mind's Eye by Håkan Nesser, the first in the Swedish crime series featuring Inspector Van Veeteren, the grumpy, cynical, aging detective who has a stinging sense of humor. In fact, although I'm an incorrigible multi-book reader, I found myself unable to read anything else until I finished this book (a rare event that I always hope for). The character of Van Veeteren is the primary attraction but the other characters are all seamlessly drawn and the plot is well-paced and absorbing. I can ...more
James Thane
This is the book that introduced Swedish Inspector Van Veeteren.

After a drunken night of love-making, Janek Mitter awakens to find his wife drowned in the bathtub, and Mitter has absolutely no recollection of what might have happened. Van Veeteren is not completely certain that Mitter is guilty of the murder, but with the evidence stacked against him and no real defense, Mitter is convicted and sent to a mental institution.

After some time in the institution, Mitter is brutally murdered, and Van
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Marsena Dufresne
I have enjoyed other Scandinavian murder mysteries so much that I was happy to discover Nesser's Inspector Van Veeteren series (of which this book is one). I've read three of his books now and there are many things about them that I don't like. For one, I was disappointed to find that Nesser's writing doesn't evoke a strong sense of place for me, which is something I have found compelling about other Scandinavian authors. I also really disliked Inspector Van Veeteren as a character; although he ...more
Shivesh
There is something in the water in those Scandinavian countries, perhaps leakage from Iceland. The hype about the various mystery writers from Sweden, Norway and Finland is no joke - much like the denizens of Reykjavik, there is something about the northern latitudes that is extremely conducive to a journey into a dark and deep mystery.

My first introduction to this kind of writing was 'Jar City', which itself was well introduced to me by its movie adaptation. When I saw 'Mind's Eye' on the libra
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Viviana
Oct 28, 2010 Viviana is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
This book starts off when Janek Mitter finds his wife, Eva Ringmar, dead in the bathtub, he calls the police and waits for them to arrive. And while he’s waiting he tidies up a little bit his house! Well by doing this the police take him in as a suspect in the murder. I was confused at the beginning because I didn’t have enough background information to know who was who and what was happening. Mitter wasn’t the greatest in cooperating with the authorities, he basically didn’t say anything, could ...more
Nancy Oakes
This is actually the first installment in the series featuring Inspector Van Veeteren, set in Sweden, and it is a good one. I really love Nesser's books, having read the first three in the series so far (Mind's Eye, Borkmann's Point, The Return). In this debut (and you'll never believe it's the first of a series, it's that good), Van Veeteren takes the case of Janek Mitter, who wakes up one morning after a night of heavy drinking to find his wife Eva in the bathtub, dead. The only suspect is Mit ...more
Carol
This book has an intriguing start. A man wakes up from a drunken stupor to find his wife dead in the bath tub. He has no memory of the night before. He phones the police and cleans the apartment. He is suspected to be the murderer by the police and is convicted of the crime. He himself is later murdered while imprisoned.

Although many people are interviewed no solid leads form because no one knows much about the murder victims. No leads at all and the book drifts from interviews of people who kn
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Naomi
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
Tahmeena
Very well-written novel. The build-up was great, characters were interesting, and the plot was definitely able to hold my attention. I would give it 4-stars but I sort of figured out the main part of the mystery about halfway through the book so I am taking off one start for being "predictable". :-) In the author's defense, this book was written a while ago and, for that time, the set up was probably pretty original. :-) Either way, I enjoyed this book and will continue reading the other ones in ...more
Mark

This was the first novel by Swedish mystery writer Hakan Nesser, and while it showed some of the signs of a first effort (some awkward writing, an underlying plot line that was a little hard to believe), he still created the usual dyspeptic chief inspector looking into a series of brutal murders.

Inspector Van Veeteren is separated from his wife, often teases his fellow cops with their lack of insight into cases, plunges forward on his own into parts of the case: an iconoclast drinking bad coffee
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Linda  Branham Greenwell
The mystery begins when Janek Mitter awakens one morning, and finds his wife dead in the bathtub. He remembers nothing. But, Janek of course is the chief suspect. The police have no other viable suspects and Janek's suspicious behavior makes it look like and open and shut case. Certainly Inspector Van Veeteren thinks so. After all who could believe Janek's convenient loss of memory as to what happened that fateful night because he drank too much at dinner?
Van Veeteren is the main character - an
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Maria João Fernandes
"When we finally find what we have been looking for in the darkness, we nearly always discover that it was exactly that. Darkness."

Foi com um sorriso, que fui incapaz de conter, e com um ansiedade crescente que li o primeiro livro da série do Inspector Van Veeteren. Dotada de diálogos estimulantes e descrições palpáveis a obra revelou-se de uma qualidade excepcional.

Janek Mattias Mitter tem 46 anos e é professor de História e Filosofia, há quase 20 anos, na escola secundária de Bunge, em Maardam
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Michael
This seems to be a common pattern that foreign detective novels from a series are translated out of order - several other Inspector Van Veeteren novels came out in English before this one. Thus the book, set in the "current day" is now describing a Sweden of almost twenty years ago.

Presumably publishers do this (out of order) because they decide that one of the later titles is more compelling for an English speaking audience - and that the first one is weaker. It certainly seems possible in this
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Tony
Nesser, Hakan. MIND’S EYE. (1993; US-2008). *****. This was the first Inspector Van Veeteren mystery novel by this author, but had a delayed translation into English so that it was the third to be published in this country. It would have been good to have read them in order, since this first novel introduces Van Veeteren and his quirky ways of going about solving crimes. Information about his personal life is also in this book that is only referred to obliquely in later novels. Anyway, the plot ...more
Ian
Hakan Nesser has gone on to write a series of novels based around the intuitive character of Detective Chief Inspector Van Veeteren. This was the first of them, published in the early nineties and I found it a gentle, easy read and although I thought that the plot progression relied too heavily on one somewhat dubiously credible issue, I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Part of the enjoyment for me was trying to work out where the action was taking place. Nesser is Swedish, but most of the place names inc
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João Carlos
1 - “Det Grovmaskiga Natet/La Tosca Red – Un Caso Del Inspector Van Veeteren/The Mind’s Eye” do escritor sueco Hakan Nesser é o primeiro livro da série Van Veeteren. A acção decorre em Maardam, um cidade fictícia, localizada num País do Norte da Europa, entre 5 de Outubro (sábado) e 5 de Dezembro (quinta-feira);

2 – Um homem acorda na escuridão da sua sala de estar. Está de ressaca, confuso, desorientado e com muitas dores. Não sabe o seu nome. Dirige-se à casa-de-banho que encontra fechada. Arro
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Ingrid Verschelling
Håkan Nesser werd beroemd met zijn tiendelige detectivereeks rond de commissaris Van Veeteren uit de fictieve stad Maardam, met trekjes van Nederland en Vlaanderen. Het grofmazige net is het debuut dat in 2001 in vertaling verscheen. Het werd uitgeroepen tot het Beste Misdaaddebuut van 1993. De opvolger Het vierde offer werd de Beste Zweedse Misdaadroman van 1994. Dit gebeurde in 1995 opnieuw met Nessers derde detective, De terugkeer (bron: noordseliteratuur.nl).

Na een nogal wilde avond vindt Ja
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Gail
What a gem of a find. I had never heard of Hakan Nesser until last week when I saw a review in my local paper about his latest book. I immediately did some investigations and found good reviews for them all. It wasn't easy finding the first in the series (the Mind's Eye) as later novels were translated into English first. Persistence paid off and wow am I glad.

I have found a new hero in Chief Inspector Van Veeteren who is a slightly flawed character, not the usual handsome Chief Inspector, psyc
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Caroline
With only a couple of kilometers to go, he stopped in a parking lot. Got out of the car. Stood with his back to the squally wind and smoked a cigarette. He's almost got used to it now, smoking. He couldn't recall any other case that had induced him to smoke so many cigarettes. Not in recent years, at least.





Filippo Bossolino
Autore nordico che non conoscevo. Ne avevo letto in giro e me l'ero segnato. Onestamente, fra i vari Nesbo, Holt, Indridason è quello che ha il protagonista che mi sta più simpatico; di solito c'è un alone di profonda tristezza e negatività nelle corde dei protagonisti del nordic noir. Qui no, c'è un commissario colto, brillante, ottimista e soprattutto sicuro di sé, virtù quest'ultima, (quasi) sempre assente nella narrativa di genere. Trovo strano che la seconda "puntata" della serie non sia st ...more
Lena
Great book - fascinating read! All the characters - except possibly the perpetrator - were interesting, believable, and likable. The detective was brilliant but with human frailties. However, as with the previous book I have read by this author, I did not like the lack of a believable setting. None of the places mentioned could be found by Google searches, and the background to the story hence lost meaning for me. There were Scandinavian as well as Dutch names of characters, but non-Dutch distan ...more
David Lowther
In think that Mind's Eye was the first of Nesser's Van Veeteran stories to be translated in to English. I've now read the first three in the series and enjoyed the lot.

These are Swedish thrillers with an odd central character, Chief Inspector Van Veeteran. Being Swedish, he comes with a heap of baggage, separated, bit of a hypochondriac etc., but this enhances rather than distracts from the narrative. He has, of course, a team in helping to solve crimes but, while they're chasing after suspects
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Fanficfan44
I picked this up from the library in my foray for some new authors to read. This is the first in a translated to English from Swedish series.

Anyway, I really liked Inspector Van Veeteren or maybe I just identified with him. He is kept on the job simply because he is really good at what he does. He is not there out of any particular passion for it or a drive to succeed. He is like a dog with bone, when things don’t seem to jive with the case, he just keeps working at it. Uncovering clue after clu
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Naty Flor
Lo leí en 3 horas y media, mi récord personal para un libro con más de 300 páginas.
Ha sido un policial que he disfrutado bastante, rapidísimo de leer y con una edición hermosa debo decir (que no está en Goodreads aunque sea de la misma editorial de la que se muestra como la que leí pero en Hardcover y con una hermosa portada).

Me gustó cómo terminó y el desarrollo de la historia para que se diera ese fin, muy bien armado por parte del autor. Nesser supo también conectar las ideas de una manera im
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Jon Frum
How did this book get four stars here? I had to put it down out of frustration - no finish means one star to me.

I only read the beginning of the book, so I can't be spoiling anything to say that the man accused of the murder (right at the start) doesn't seem to care that his wife is dead, and seems to have absolutely no interest in defending himself in court. How can I be expected to be interested in him if he willfully works against his own interest? The book then goes into the trial, and I ha
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Sydney
This was a fun myster/thriller, although it wasn't as involved or as disgusting as I usually appreciate (think Dean R. Koontz). Very suprise ending, lots of fun characters, and worth a read.
Helen
This is the first of a series which has been appearing out of order in English, so this is not a recent book (published in Swedish in 1993). It's a police procedural, Van Veeteren and his team largely in the dark but then work things out (and don't always share their insights with the readers). Much is don through dialogue. One thing I found rather disconcerting was not knowing where any of it takes place - there is little sense of place at all, and although there is something a bit Scandinavian ...more
Kristin
So glad that I read books two and then three in this series before this first one, because I am not sure I'd have kept going. Nesser definitely hits his stride in book two.
Mirrordance
Un giallo che si legge tutto di un fiato. Una storia ambientata a nord in quelle atmosfere rarefatte dei paesi scandinavi. Un ispetto0re di polizia è poco convinto del suo caso, qualcosa di indistinto e contrario agli indizi che ha gli fa pensare che in realtà l'accusato non sia colpevole. Ne avrà la certezza solamente quando questi verrà a sua volta assassinato all'interno di un manicomio criminale e comincerà il lento ripercorrere degli indizi e della storia, a ritroso fino ad arrivare al vero ...more
Karin Salvalaggio
This stylistically austere and intelligently written Nordic thriller keeps the reader in engaged from start to finish. Van Veeteren (VV) is a grumbling detective with a dry sense of humour and seemingly endless collection of toothpicks. His interest is piqued when an affable philosophy teacher named Janek Mitter is accused of murdering his wife but has no recollection as to whether he did or not because he was so intoxicated. When the body count begins to rise VV must use both his wit and his ch ...more
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Scandinavian Crim...: Mind's Eye from Håkan Nesser 1 8 Feb 28, 2012 12:27PM  
Scandinavian and ...: January 2012 read - Mind's Eye by Hakan Nesser 16 51 Feb 04, 2012 09:36AM  
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161054
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
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More about Håkan Nesser...

Other Books in the Series

Inspector Van Veeteren (10 books)
  • Borkmann's Point (Inspector Van Veeteren #2)
  • The Return (Inspector Van Veeteren #3)
  • Woman with Birthmark (Inspector Van Veeteren #4)
  • The Inspector and Silence (Inspector Van Veeteren #5)
  • Münsters Fall (Inspector Van Veeteren #6)
  • Der unglückliche Mörder. (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)
Borkmann's Point (Inspector Van Veeteren #2) The Return (Inspector Van Veeteren #3) Woman with Birthmark (Inspector Van Veeteren #4) The Inspector and Silence (Inspector Van Veeteren #5) Münsters Fall (Inspector Van Veeteren #6)

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