Joanne's Reviews > 1222

1222 by Anne Holt
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Jul 11, 12

bookshelves: thriller
Read in July, 2012

1222 is a fairly classic "closed room" mystery, set in rural Norway. The narrator, former police inspector Hanne Wilhelmsen, is a lonely and irascible woman who deliberately uses her paraplegic status to keep other human beings at a safe distance. When the train on which she's traveling crashes in the mountains, in the middle of a storm of historic (not to say biblical) proportions, she is forced back into her police investigator role to help solve two nasty murders. The first person narration works fairly well, but for my taste, Anne Holt used too many clichés to demonstrate Hanne's inner vulnerability. No spoilers here, as these things happen early in the novel -- first, a small baby is catapulted into Hanne's arms during the accident, and shortly thereafter, she attempts to befriend (or at least provide some protection to) a runaway teenage boy who reminds her of her own difficult childhood. The fact that one of the only other people Hanne warms to is a doctor with dwarfism almost made me put the book down -- but as I was stuck on a train myself, the book was good enough to keep me reading to find out the identity of the killer. Too many convenient coincidences -- very few of which seem to have any purpose in the plot -- also left a bad taste in my mouth. Overall, it's entertaining, but not my favorite.
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