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The Dying Detective

(Jarnebring & Johansson #8)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  1,446 ratings  ·  165 reviews
A galvanizing new thriller from the internationally acclaimed and best-selling author--a stand-alone novel that finds legendary Swedish homicide detective Lars Martin Johansson racing against time to solve one final murder.
In the National Criminal Investigation Department he was known as "the man who sees around corners." Now Johansson is retired, living in the country,
Kindle Edition, 434 pages
Published May 23rd 2017 by Pantheon (first published 2010)
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A ScandiCrime written by Leif Persson, it has his trademark subtle and dark humour and incorporates Swedish cultural and political history which I really like. The strong and likeable character of the retired police chief Lars Martin Johansson is at the heart of the story with his refusal to give up on a cold case from 1986 from his hospital bed. The fact the case is conducted from his hospital bed lends the story a strong cerebral quality. This is not your run around, fast paced affair. The de ...more
Apr 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was listed as a ‘stand alone’ novel by author, Leif G.W. Persson. Although Persson is a well known Swedish novelist and criminologist, I had not read any of his books before, but soon discovered that he has written eight crime novels featuring detectives Jarnebring and/or Johansson (of which this is the eighth) – with books 4-6 being known as the “Fall of the Welfare State Trilogy” and Book 7 the first in the “Evert Backstrom” (‘Linda’) novels. As far as I can tell, his first three boo ...more
Lars Martin Johansson, retired chief of the Swedish National Criminal Police, was having such a nice day. One minute he was standing in line for a hot dog at his favourite kiosk, the next everything went black. When he comes to in hospital, he’s told all those years of inactivity & fine dining have caught up with him. His struggling heart caused a stroke. Over the next few days visitors trickle in & out as Lars comes to grips with his immortality. But it’s his doctor who provides a welco ...more
Bonnie Brody
Mar 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
'The Dying Detective' is a wonderful novel that transcends genres. It is a literary in-depth character study, love story, mystery, and morality tale. It offers up a dazzling array of unexpected gifts to the reader.

Lars Martin Johansson, former head of the National Criminal Police in Stockholm, Sweden has just ordered a sausage from the best hotdog kiosk in Sweden. He goes to his car to enjoy his food when he suffers a stroke. The next thing he knows, he is a patient in the Karolinska Hospital wh
switterbug (Betsey)
Lars Martin Johansson, retired crackerjack police detective and former head of the National Criminal Police in Stockholm, was “the man who could see around corners.” Unfortunately, he has let his body go slack since becoming a pensioner, and he is lucky to see his feet! He nourishes his mind with the daily paper and nuggets of literature, but he feeds his body with high volumes of the wrong cholesterol and carbs. One day, after buying his typical sausage meal from his favorite kiosk, he collapse ...more
William Shaw
Apr 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
That Perrson manages to keep you hooked using a detective who's a retired, sick, overweight Chief of Police who is often confined to bed or to the sofa, is an achievement in itself. But the real joy in this book is the sparse, Nordic laconic humor, which I suspect occasionally slips through the floorboards in translation. There's a great economy to it. Perrson's characters often reflect on a moment with a single pithy sentence, or a phrase repeated from an earlier scene. Lars Martin Johansson is ...more
Niklas Pivic
Sep 25, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
Recommended to Niklas by: noone
Jostle me and kill me. That's how I feel from having experienced this.

Filled to the brim with simplicities, a language so dated that every single character is unbelievable and an ending that everybody is able to tell from the start. "Hard-boiled" male characters everywhere.

The author is a Swedish professor in criminology. Too bad that doesn't show.

I must say I fell asleep during several trials of reading this. That's something.
4.5 stars. I had no idea that this book was part of a series when I checked it out of the library. With that said, I must admit that I really wish I had the opportunity to read the other books prior to this one primarily for detailed character background information. There were definitely times when I was reading this that I felt as if I was missing something.
Overall though this was a really good book. The plot of the book centers around a retired police officer who has a stroke and winds up adm
Tonstant Weader
The Dying Detective is a mystery by Leif G. W. Persson whose work may be familiar to people who watched the Backstrom TV series on FOX. It opens with Lars Martin Johansson, retired head of the National Criminal Police, stopping at a food cart for sausage and sauerkraut. It was lucky for him that he did so, because he had a stroke as soon as he settled back into his car. Even more fortuitous, several officers had been at the cart and were there to rush him to the hospital where quick action saved ...more
Eva Dillner
Jul 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books I've read. I read the Swedish original so will do my review likewise.

Jag har sedan ungdomen läst väldigt många deckare. Men den här är nog en av de bästa jag läst. Redan från första meningen när magen längtar till Günthers korvkiosk så dras man rätt in i handlingen. Jag sträckläste boken, ville bara fortsätta. Att följa känslorna, tankarna och så all denna mat som den stroke drabbade Johansson längtar efter är en ren njutning. Jag verkligen ser framför mig alla personerna s
Apr 09, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Shortlisted Petrona Award 2017
...still I am not impressed
I have read better crime ficton.
My advice? try Pierre Lemaitre!

Jeremy Megraw
Nov 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Originally posted on Crime Fiction Lover

As retired detective Lars Martin Johansson, a living legend in the Swedish National Police Force, approaches his favourite hot dog kiosk in Stockholm, he hasn’t a care in the world except to savour his favorite lunch ritual. Will it be Yugoslavian bratwurst, Zigeuner schnitzel, or elk sausage? The revered detective is surrounded by admirers as he ponders his choices, all delicious but none too healthy. Unfortunately, the fat and happy ex-cop suffers a mass
Ingrid Verschelling
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, scandie, thriller
De Zweed Leif G.W. Persson is hoogleraar criminologie en schrijver, en had met tussenpozen functies bij de top van de Zweedse politie. In de naweeën van een prostitutieschandaal rond de Zweedse minister van justitie werd hij ontslagen, en dit dreef hem bijna tot zelfmoord. Hij keerde echter terug, en was o.a. betrokken bij het onderzoek naar de moord op premier Olof Palme in 1986. Hij schreef twee thrillers met in de hoofdrol Evert Bäckström, en zes met in de hoofdrol Lars Martin Johansson. Pers ...more
The writer's apparently extremely highly thought of in Sweden; he's a professor at the Swedish Nat'l Police Board, has been an adviser to the Swedish Ministry of Justice, and has written some 10 to 15 other books, three of which (one of them is this one) won the Best Swedish Crime Novel Award. Wikipedia says Persson won the "2011 Glass Key award for Den döende detektiven (The Dying Detective); this award is a given annually to a crime novel by an author from the Nordic countries and the 2011 Pal ...more
May 21, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
How is that possible that everyone in this book remember so good names, conversations, details from 25 years ago? quoting what people said quarter a century ago! oh please. And they all seem to be super clever, having ' a feeling' and with that 'feeling' suddenly they find the murderer after 25 years silence. Policemen know everything about witnesses and also about parents of the victim without checking it. They know that they divorced, that mother came back to Iran, started to wear burke again. ...more
Aug 05, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
Lättläst, men fruktansvärt ospännande. Nästan olidligt tråkig, mycket tråkigare än förväntat. Språket platt och repetativt, karaktärerna nästan ännu plattare. Höll dessutom på att drivas till vansinne av att huvudpersonens bidrag till all dialog alltid följde mönstret "[...], sa han. [...], tänkte han". Förnumstig och pösig ton som omger allt. Uh!
Marina Sofia
Dec 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A delight for those who enjoy their own puzzles, but also full of indignation and empathy. And a race against a very different kind of clock. Reminds me quite a bit of 'The Judge and His Hangman', a book which is referenced here.
Rob Kitchin
May 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Dying Detective is the eighth book in the Jarnebring and Johansson, not all of which have been translated into English. It can though be read as a standalone and I’ve not yet read any of the other books. In this outing, Johansson has retired as police chief and suffers a serious stroke. While recovering he starts to investigate a twenty five year old rape and murder of a nine year old girl that was never solved. Using his friend Jarnebring to run errands and asking favours of former colleagu ...more
Mike Cuthbert
Jun 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was, in many ways, a frightening book for a guy my age to read. Lars Martin Johansson, the protagonist, is in his seventies and retired from the National Criminal Police in Norway. Off to get his favorite snack, he gets it but doesn’t get to eat it as he has a stroke. The stroke leaves him bed-ridden with a paralyzed right arm, general weakness, heart problems and almost constant headaches. Despite all that, he hears from his doctor, a lovely female, Dr. Stenholm, about a cold case involvin ...more
Ffion Wyn
(3-4 stars, I'm too indecisive!!)
ok, so it's impossible to explain why I was so frustrated by this book without spoiling it but it was brilliant until I was about 400 pages in. Worth reading for the first bit though! The blurb gives the impression that it should be really fast paced and tense and it just isn't! I was really looking forward a really thrilling crime novel, ad don't get me wrong there were sections when I was totally enthralled and couldn't put it down, but I just feel let down by
Aravind Nagarajan
Mar 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Read this largely on the flight to SF and during my first week here. A nice thriller, somewhat slow and languid.
The ending was a bit protracted, but a very good police procedural novel.
Jun 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I didnt realise this was part of a series. Had I done I wouldn't have read it and really missed out. A real page turner. Enough of the policeman's former life to make his actions believable but not enough to spoil any future back reads. Told with such respect and affection and quite a bit of humour too.
Jessica Currie
Oct 30, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In his prime, Lars Martin Johansson was known among his colleagues as ‘the man who could see around corners’, as well as a walking encyclopaedia when it came to violent crime. As soon as his associates came across and old case they couldn’t place, they would start by asking Johansson...

Now something had happened inside his head. He could live with the fact that he had forgotten the name of his son’s second wife….the fact that he was unable to remember the murder of Yasmine, apparently only nine
Aug 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reading this book made me want to read all of his books! A good, engrossing mystery
G.J. Minett
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'd probably have to describe Persson's books as a labour of love. They're invariably long and certainly not going to appeal to anyone who is looking for unrelenting pace and action with bodies piling up and a cliffhanger at the end of every chapter. Indeed, the closest I came to biting my nails in this offering was when the magnificent Lars Johansson suffered a stroke at the start of the book and even that was offset by the quiet humour which shines through his grumpy resistance to the efforts ...more
Rowena Hoseason
Aug 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2016
This book’s title totally gives the game away. The fate of Lars Johansson, not so very long retired from his position as head of Sweden’s national serious crime squad, is determined in the opening chapter during which he suffers a catastrophic cerebrovascular event which leaves him physically, emotionally and intellectually undermined. But that moment also provides the springboard for one final investigation, a chance to resolve a mishandled, 25-year-old cold case. This was the first book by Lei ...more
Julie Mestdagh
Dec 11, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Den döende detektiven" blijkt het laatste boek te zijn in de detectivereeks rond rechercheur Lars Johansson, doch het eerste boek van de reeks dat ik las. Dat vormde gelukkig geen enkel obstakel voor de lectuur van het boek.

Gepensioneerd rechercheur Johansson wordt op een dag geveld door een beroerte - het gevolg van overmatig drankgebruik, slechte eetgewoonten en weinig beweging sinds zijn pensioen - en wordt op zijn ziektebed aangesproken door zijn doctores. Zij herkent in hem de succesvolle
Dec 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Den döende detektiven (De stervende detective) of Het laatste woord van de Zweedse schrijver Leif. G.W. Persson is één van de decemberboeken van de FB-page 'Literatuur uit het hoge Noorden'. Het is mijn eerste boek van deze auteur die nochtans heel veel succes kent in eigen land. Dit boek is de negende thriller (eerder detective) van zijn hand. Nu speelt zijn personage Lars Martin Johansson, de nu gepensioneerde chef van het nationale politiekorps opnieuw de hoofdrol (afwisselend met anti-held I ...more
Elaine Tomasso
Apr 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Random House for an advance copy of The Dying Detective, the story of Lars Martin Johansson's last case. Johansson is the retired chief of the national police and security services and at the start of the novel suffers a stroke after a lifetime of living the old fashioned police life of poor diet and no exercise. When in hospital he is approached by his doctor about the 1986 unsolved murder of nine year old Yasmine Ermegan. Due to a peculiarity of Swedish law, ...more
Thomas Strömquist
The swan song of Lars Martin Johansson was unfortunately a bit of a disappointment for me. Much as with Linda - som i Lindamordet I found myself wondering at times if Person had a ghost writer for this one. His usual sharpness and timing are largely missing for parts of the story. Not as apparent as with the earlier book (and this is certainly a lot better), this is not near his best efforts.
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La Stamberga dei ...: L'ultima indagine di Leif GW Persson 1 4 Dec 11, 2013 01:27AM  
  • En helt annan historia (Barbarotti #2)
  • Efterskalv (A-gruppen, #9)
  • The Harry Bosch Novels, Volume 4: The Narrows, The Closers, Echo Park (Harry Bosch, #10-12)
  • Pierced (Henning Juul, #2)
  • Mamma, pappa, barn (Hammarbyserien, #2)
  • Fjällgraven  (Sebastian Bergman, #3)
  • Svensk maffia: En kartläggning av de kriminella gängen
  • Nobels testamente (Annika Bengtzon #6)
  • Vad gör alla superokända människor hela dagarna?
  • Angel of Light
  • Svalens graf
  • Kvinderne på stranden
Leif Gustav Willy Persson - better known as Leif GW Persson - is a Swedish criminologist and novelist. He was a professor in criminology at the Swedish National Police Board from 1992 to 2008.

He is known for his crime fiction novels and for his regular appearances as an expert commentator on notable crime cases in television and newspapers. Between 1999 and 2009 he participated as an expert comme

Other books in the series

Jarnebring & Johansson (8 books)
  • Grisfesten: En rövarroman
  • Profitörerna
  • Samhällsbärarna
  • Between Summer's Longing and Winter's End (Fall of the Welfare State, #1)
  • Another Time, Another Life (Fall of the Welfare State, #2)
  • Faller fritt som i en dröm (Fall of the Welfare State, #3)
  • Linda - som i Lindamordet
“Make the best of what you’ve got, don’t complicate things unnecessarily, and hate coincidence.” 0 likes
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