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The Hypnotist (Joona Linna #1)

3.62  ·  Rating Details ·  27,883 Ratings  ·  2,774 Reviews
Prepare for The Hypnotist to cast its spell

In the frigid clime of Tumba, Sweden, a gruesome triple homicide attracts the interest of Detective Inspector Joona Linna, who demands to investigate the murders. The killer is still at large, and there’s only one surviving witness—the boy whose family was killed before his eyes. Whoever committed the crimes wanted this boy to die
Hardcover, 503 pages
Published June 21st 2011 by Sarah Crichton Books (first published 2009)
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Jack Caffery I was about to write the exact same thing, it just dragged on didn't it! My argument being, it shunted the flow of the book and was quite unnecessary.…moreI was about to write the exact same thing, it just dragged on didn't it! My argument being, it shunted the flow of the book and was quite unnecessary. A slog even. I just didn't like the past tense prose when the rest of the book was nicely flowing in the present tense, took me right out of the story. I would have written it differently, like the stuff about the patients are reiterated back to the detective, it just wasn't needed for us to have a detailed account of all the patients, it just kept repeating itself. Other than that the rest of the book was great. (less)
Julie Fønskov I know, I wondered about the same thing. Many things annoyed me about this book, but this is one big detail that's not explained. Since the biting…moreI know, I wondered about the same thing. Many things annoyed me about this book, but this is one big detail that's not explained. Since the biting just doesn't make sense in the context of the rest of the Ek family plot part, it makes me feel like it's just put in there to pull the rug from under the reader and then forgotten about completely.

Actually the whole deal with the Ek siblings seems really unfinished and inconclusive to me. And I honestly found their messed up situation way more interesting than the Benjamin one. But that's just me.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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I wish someone would hypnotize me and erase the memory of reading this book.

OK, it isn’t that bad from a writing standpoint and basic premise, but it had a lot of buzz that I didn’t think it came close to living up to. Slapping that “The Next Stieg Larsson!”* label on any new Swedish thriller is probably automatic at this point, but it sets up a reader up for disappointment when there’s no character anywhere near as interesting as Lisbeth Salander around. Extra disappointing when most of the cha
Sep 03, 2013 Eric rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of the Millenium trilogy
Recommended to Eric by: Library
I really liked this novel, and would have given it four stars if not for three things that irked me about the way it was written.

1) The authors (this was written by a married couple) use the present tense in narration (e.g. Joona walks into the room and sits down). At first, I thought there was a compelling reason for this, but after finishing the book, I can't come up with anything, except perhaps that it was poorly translated into English -- do Swedish authors normally write in present tense?
Aug 14, 2011 Joe rated it did not like it
I suppose I should say this is a spoiler alert. Read on at your own risk. I continue to be amazed by people's reviews. Many ( most) always begin by giving a summation of the plot. This is stupid and totally unnecessary. People already know what the book is about. Personal Reviews should tell what the reader thought. This is an amazingly hyped book. I would suppose that every publishing company wants to discover the next Steig Larrsen. Obviously, Its not that easy. First you need to be able to wr ...more
Aug 14, 2015 Melissa rated it liked it
Shelves: yikes
Sweden, what is going on there? On one hand, this is a pretty good book. Joona Linna is everything you want in a police inspector - ruggedly good-looking, arrogant yet polite, and always right (my favorite line? "I'm not usually wrong and I believe we're going to find your son." Tell me, Joona, do you ever tell someone, "I'm not usually wrong & I think your son is long gone"?). The story is genuinely creepy - when Simone is awakened in the night by someone giving her an injection & she s ...more
Nov 01, 2016 Arah-Lynda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, i-said
This is a very dark, horrific story that ranks high in creepiness. Seriously it left me feeling like I needed to take a shower and wash the creep away. The cover would have you beleive that it is comparable to Silence of the Lambs or Stieg Larsson's Millenium series but I have to disagree with that. Now I love a good mystery, better still if it happens to be a thriller where life and death hang in the balance as they race to find and stop the villian. The Hypnotist certainly contains all of thes ...more
Stephanie Harris
May 10, 2013 Stephanie Harris rated it did not like it
I read it so you don't have to. You are welcome. This book is laughably and infuriatingly terrible. I only finished it because I paid for it, dammit, and wanted to see how terrible it would actually get, God help me. Almost all the characters are unlikeable. It begins with the detective as seemingly the main character with a dark event in his past, which, unless I missed it, IS NEVER EXPLAINED. But never mind, because the book is really not about him, it is about the hypnotist. Fair enough, sinc ...more

Još jedna GSP avantura je završena :)
U poslednje vreme ponovo čitam trilere, i jako mi prijaju.
"Hipnotizer" nije remek-delo svog žanra, sam početak romana i nije tako obećavajući, a dijalozi su ovom švedskom autorskom paru slabija strana. Naime, Aleksandar i Aleksandra Andoril pišu pod pseudonimom Laš Kepler trilere u kojima je glavni lik policijski detektiv Jona Lina.
Neko bi rekao, pa šta onda valja?! Valja jedan od centralnih likova romana - doktor Erik Marija Bark, penzionisani hipnotizer,
May 20, 2011 Sue rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-thrillers
I have never read such an amazing twisting novel.There are not words to express how super this book was.I can only give praise to the authors.

Erik Maria Bark, talented doctor whose specialty is the treatment of seriously traumatized persons, formerly also with hypnotize, is called to Karolinska hospital, where a 15-year-old boy lies severely injured - the only survivor of a family massacre in the outskirts of Stockholm.

It turns out that the boy has an older sister who's disappeared, and there's
Sep 05, 2011 Pamela rated it it was ok
Shelves: reviewed
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 29, 2015 Brenda rated it liked it
I was interested, and at times, gripped by this book, especially in the beginning and at the end. However, there were times I was bored, not really reading intensely, anxious for progress. I think the book was just too long. I felt the dialogue was stilted and that's probably due to translation. There were things happening that didn't seem relevant to the story. I probably won't read anything more by these authors.
Sep 30, 2011 Helen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: nordic-noir
This could have been so good, but there are way too many unresolved and unexplained tangents to this tale. The narrative jumps from one murder case to the next with no real explanation, I was expecting the connection to be explained nearer the end, but there just isn't one! It's like the writers had two plot ideas they really liked and couldn't choose between the two, so just sort of smooshed them together, resulting in something not quite as good as either idea would have been on its own. The u ...more
Jan 18, 2015 Katherine rated it did not like it
Any review of this book should really just be a video of me giggling. My God this book was stupid.

Conflict was based on stupid sitcom style miss-communication, the horribly injured boy with the deflated lung runs around stabbing people with impunity, the police are ridiculously incompetent, (view spoiler)
Karen Struffert
I can't say I didn't like this book. I just had some issues with it. I liked the story line. Very dark, but interesting - a definite thriller! But if there's one thing I can't stand, it's unresolved plot twists. So if anyone can help me with these, please feel free...

1. When Evelyn Ek is being consoled by a female police officer after hearing about her family's demise and disclosing some info about her disturbed and disturbing brother, she bites the officer in the neck and actually causes a blee
Tonile {My Cup and Chaucer}
I finished Lars Kepler’s The Hypnotist yesterday and again found myself wanting to leave a good 24 hours or so for the book to sink in before I reviewed it. I mentioned to a good friend of mine earlier in the week that I wanted to read another Scandinavian crime novel soon, and this was an old reading copy I had on my desk. I noticed that it was already available in stores and figured I should get my act together and read it. I think I am pleased that I did...

I won’t lie about it; there will be
Deborah Gray
May 12, 2012 Deborah Gray rated it really liked it
I have never read anything darker, more forboding, more utterly tormented than Swedish thrillers...and continue to come back for more. When they are done well, as this is, there is nothing more insistently suspenseful and satisfyingly terrifying.

Erik Maria Bark is a highly regarded psychotherapist specializing in acute trauma. He is also a disgraced hypnotist. Ten years ago, he swore a solemn, public oath never to perform hypnosis again. And yet, dragged from his bed early in the morning by a d
Oct 23, 2016 Ana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kobo
Este thriller foi escrito por uma dupla de escritores e talvez por isso seja tão empolgante.
O desafio acontece a cada capítulo e quando o leitor pensa que conseguiu desvendar o mistério é nos dado mais pistas, mais acontecimentos que baralham a nossa estratégia. Ler este livro é um desafio também para o leitor que está permanentemente envolvido no mistério e na carga psicológica das personagens.
Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
This book was nothing like I thought it would be. An avid crime reader and lover of the darker crime stuff out there I thought this would be chilling, terrifying and spectacular based on reviews by both well known and lesser known reviewers. Was I reading a different book? As this book did not throw up anything like that my way.

When a whole family is murdered in Stockholm, DI Joona Linna knows there is only one person who can find the perpetrator. Erik Maria Bark, retired hypnotist, is called i
Linda Strong
Feb 03, 2015 Linda Strong rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
The premise of the story is a good one. Bodies of a family are found butchered. There are no survivors except for the teenaged son who is lying at death's door. Under hypnosis, the son confesses to the crime. This is where things get bit disjointed for me.

I found it confusing with the back and forth from present to past. Lots and lots of characters, which I think the author managed very nicely. I did not like the main characters. Detective Linna is a bit arrogant ...always demanding people to t
Florence (Lefty) MacIntosh
3 stars: Another great thriller with lots of twists & turns from a pool of talented and recently trendy Swedish authors. This one the strange & haunting tale of 15 year old Josef, only witness and survivor of the slaughter of his entire family. Detective Joona Linna turns for help in solving the crime to a brilliant doctor, hoping he can unlock Josef’s hidden memories; a doctor who has given up hypnosis doubting its ethics and his own abilities. On the plus side, great character develop ...more
Jake Rideout
Jan 20, 2013 Jake Rideout rated it liked it
Sweden is a scary-ass place. This book was like, "One of these suspects has committed a crime. All of the suspects are currently involved in murdering people in gruesome ways. Which of these murderers has committed the crime?"

If my only knowledge of Sweden were gained through the reading of its bestselling translated novels, I would think that every other Swedish person has a decomposing body in his basement. And, incidentally, my only knowledge of Sweden IS gained through the reading of its bes
Greg at 2 Book Lovers Reviews
Over the past few years, I’ve developed a bit of an affinity for Nordic noir, dark crime stories set in Scandinavia. There is an engaging darkness that I find myself drawn to in these stories, I don’t know if it’s the long dark winters that they have there, but many of these authors just connect with me.

The Hypnotist is set in Sweden from December 8th until the 24th. It is an intense story on many levels: the dark antagonists, the depth of the crimes committed, even the betrayals of many of the
Apr 08, 2012 Rita rated it it was ok
I was really disappointed by this book. It started out with a big bang and had a really good premise, but then it all just fell to hell, becoming a clown car of horrible sadists who just kept parading out of the story in a never-ending line, doing the most awful things imaginable. I'm no horror novice and it takes a lot to shock or offend me, but it was just the multitude of sadists in this book which was so off-turning. Like there are all these terrible murderers and torturers around every corn ...more
Sep 10, 2016 Rita rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
1 palavra. 6 letras.

Já tinha este livro na minha estante há algum tempo e, não sei exatamente por que razão, mas andei a adiar o dia em que iria pegar nele e desfolhar aquelas inúmeras páginas.
Bem, o dia em que acordei e finalmente o arranquei da estante foi decididamente um dia importante.

O livro é um thriller recheado de personagens complexas, que vamos conhecendo lentamente. É possuidor de um enredo entusiasmante e de reviravoltas sucessivas que nos fazem devorar frases e frases, pág
Mar 24, 2016 Mohikanos rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ξεκινάω την κριτική μου γράφοντας για τα αρνητικά του βιβλίου:
1. Η χρήση του Ενεστώτα σε τρίτο πρόσωπο που χρησιμοποιούν οι συγγραφείς νομίζω ότι δεν είχε τα επιθυμητά αποτελέσματα, καθώς νιώθεις μακρυά από τα γεγονότα, απλός παρατηρητής και δεν μπορείς να γίνεις μέρος του σκηνικού (έτσι τουλάχιστον αισθάνθηκα εγώ).
2. Στη μέση περίπου του βιβλίου γίνεται μια αναδρομή στο παρελθόν η οποία είναι αρκετά εκτεταμένη και ίσως σε κάποια σημεία κουράζει. Η αλήθεια βέβαια είναι ότι η ροή των γεγονότων πο

During the whole bookI felt the tension. I just could not put it down! The story is about a man who breaks a promise he made a long time ago. Then his son disappears and nobody has a clue why and who did it.
Usually somewhere half way the book I am already guessing who did it, but this time for me the outcome was surprising too. I will not give away any details, because it would ruin the fun for all that want to read it, be it in Swedish, English, German.
Cristina Lee
May 22, 2015 Cristina Lee rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
Quasi seicento, ripeto seicento pagine di tortura.
Una fatica protratta più a lungo del dovuto (mai successo con un thriller), uno stile che continua a distrarre il lettore. Avvenimenti dati voce a più e più e troppi personaggi tra passato, presente, passato, presente. La mia sensazione è stata: non me ne frega niente, vogliamo andare a risolvere sto caso?
Astenetevi dal leggerlo.
Sep 25, 2011 Sharon rated it liked it
Shelves: horror-thriller
The Hypnotist was a good thriller, but in my opinion it did not live up to the hype that it received, and it was not quite worth the 503 page investment.
I did find myself intrigued and interested many times throughout the story, but there were also numerous instances where the story felt disjointed, and there were sections of the book where I couldn’t find a character that I actually wanted to read about. The authors start strong, with a solid protagonist- Detective Inspector Joona Linna, who c
Gerald Curtis
Sep 11, 2011 Gerald Curtis rated it did not like it
I have to give the conclusion to the story a big pat on the back. This was unquestionably the most compelling, unable-to-put-it-down ending I’ve ever read. Spell-binding!

So why didn’t I like this book? There are too many reasons to detail, but here are a few that really bug me. One is the use of flashbacks. Just when something interesting to the plot is about to happen, we are detoured way back in time for flashbacks so lengthy that frankly, by the time there were over, I had almost forgotten wh
Craig Pospisil
Aug 04, 2012 Craig Pospisil rated it did not like it
I read an interesting article about this book and the authors, and it sounded interesting, especially since I've been reading some of the various Scandinavian crime novels recently. The Hypnotist starts well. The first third of the book really grabbed my interest, but the next section began to get a little dicey. It strained credulity and I felt the authors pushing the story rather than the story simply unfolding.

But about halfway through the book goes completely off the rails and things just st
May 23, 2016 Petra rated it did not like it
This book is a con. The stated murders are not what the book is about; they serve only to draw the reader in. The characters are whiney; conversation is simple, petty and unfinished; communication is missing; there are many loose ends as the author decides to drop certain tangents to pick up others.
Not much in this story hangs together. The character are flat. The professionals are amazingly dense and ignorant (the mother sees someone drug her son, is drugged herself, and the son taken from the
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Has anyone finished this book? 74 460 Jun 05, 2015 09:38AM  
please help answer this question 12 203 Mar 19, 2015 07:45AM  
Ann Kirkham Virtu...: Thanks! 1 4 Jul 04, 2014 01:18PM  
Such a difference of opinion on this book 8 92 Apr 23, 2014 04:19PM  
Goodreads Librari...: ISBN 9780374173951 and format is not matching 3 157 Aug 04, 2013 11:15AM  
THE LISTS: The hypnotist (update 6) 2 12 May 12, 2013 06:47AM  
Anyone know how to get the details changed? 1 29 Apr 15, 2013 02:47PM  
  • Summer Death
  • Flickan med snö i håret (Hagfors, #1)
  • Burned (Henning Juul #1)
  • Blodläge
  • Studio sex (Annika Bengtzon, #1)
  • Three Seconds (Grens & Sundkvist #5)
  • Unwanted (Fredrika Bergman and Alex Recht, #1)
  • Hungerelden (Victoria Bergmans svaghet, #2)
  • Dark Secrets (Sebastian Bergman, #1)
  • Flaskepost fra P (Afdeling Q, #3)
  • De ensamma
  • Bad Intentions (Inspector Konrad Sejer, #9)
  • Until Thy Wrath be Past (Rebecka Martinsson, #4)
  • Missing
Lars Kepler is a pseudonym used by Swedish writer couple Alexander Ahndoril and Alexandra Coelho Ahndoril. Both previously published authors, together they have written five crime novels so far, all concerning the investigations of police inspector Joona Linna.
More about Lars Kepler...

Other Books in the Series

Joona Linna (6 books)
  • The Nightmare (Joona Linna, #2)
  • Eldvittnet (Joona Linna, #3)
  • Sandmannen (Joona Linna, #4)
  • Stalker (Joona Linna, #5)
  • Kaninjägaren (Joona Linna, #6)

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Mortui vivis docent - the dead teach the living.” 15 likes
“«Porque o passado não está morto. O passado nem sequer passou» - William Faulkner.
Referia-me a que cada pequena coisa que acontece a um ser humano o acompanha até ao presente. Todas as suas vivências influenciam cada uma das suas opções e, tratando-se de experiências traumaticas, o passado passa a ocupar todo o espaço do presente.”
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