Chris's Reviews > Red Wolf

Red Wolf by Liza Marklund
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's review
Mar 20, 11

bookshelves: beauty-and-beast, mystery-fairy-tales, mystery-nordic, lit-fiction-scandivian
Recommended for: people who had problems with whatsherface from the Tattoo book
Read from March 18 to 20, 2011

Okay, this bit before the review is really an angry rant about publishing. Honestly what is with you publishers? Releasing book five in a series, at least in America, before releasing the other ones? How does this make sense? Fix it!

I first heard about Marklund though a reviewer here at Goodreads that I follow. At that time, Marklund's series was not availble in the U.S., because we American are illiterate readers, because I don't know. The books are up on Amazon, but a 25 dollar paperback is WAAAAAAAAAAY out of my price range. I couldn't find any in any used backstore.

Then Red Wolf came out and I got it this weekend.

I love Liza Marklund. I really, really do. I want her and her creation, Annika, to beat up the publishers and make them publish the rest of the books. (And if any author could do it, it's Marklund).

Now, I can hear you asking - well, if you feel that way about it, why did you give it four stars?

That's the publisher's fault. Because this is book five in a series, there is a sense of entering mid-point. This doesn't make it necessary to read the other books to know what is going on. I, however, have the feeling that reading the other books in the series would answer the central question I have about Annika in this book - whether or not she is suffering PTSD or something more? Additionally, as American, I found the whole bit about the television station, while easy enough to follow, slightly, strange. It felt like it tied into some comment on Swedish or EU television that I didn't get because I lack the political background. Not that it stopped me from enjoying the novel.

Red Wolf deals with the reporter Annika and her investigation into a terrorist attack in Sweden during the 1970s. Annika is a bit like Lisabeth (or whatever her name is) from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, though I believe this series predates Larsson. Annika is not a socially acceptable woman, she tends to be a bit hard headed, but she also is married with two children. She also has friends and doesn't put people off.

That in part, is why I liked this book. Annika is different but she is not a total outsider. She feels normal as well as different, almost more believable and less cliche. It's nice to the see the friendship in the novels, in particular the friendship she has with two women (one an old friend, another a co-worker). It makes her part of the world instead of part of a man's world, which can happen in books with a heroine.

During the course of her work, Annika must also deal with conflicts in her marriage (and how she deals with it, will spark a 'hey yeah'). In addition to the up front mystery and the homefront sub-plot, Marklund also deals with current trends in newspaper reporting. In other words, if you loved the last season of The Wire, you'll want to read this.

It is most likely true, that the reader will be able to figure out one of the baddies before hand, but Marklund seems to credit the reader with this ability. The writing is wonderful and gripping, though as a new reader to the series, it took about 35 pages to really get into it. I read the last 100 without looking up I was so engrossed.
Now, I just got to get the others in the series.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by Jeanette (new)

Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist" LOL! Whatsherface from the Tattoo book! I never got more than about 50 pages into that book. Bleh! Thanks for the heads up that this is book 5 in a series.

Chris I actually read all of the Tattoo book. I think I would have liked it better without withsherface.

message 3: by Carmen (new) - added it

Carmen Yes, I hate when this happens. A lot of Norwegian series, I've found, just start in the middle of a series when they release English translations. So annoying!

Chris I know. I get that maybe the later books are better, but there is such a strange sense of entering and missing half the story.

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