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The Blood Spilt

(Rebecka Martinsson #2)

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  8,122 ratings  ·  487 reviews
It’s midsummer in Sweden—when the light lingers through dawn and a long, isolating winter finally comes to an end. In this magical time, a brutal killer has chosen to strike. A female priest—who made enemies and acolytes in equal number—has been found hanging in her church. And a big-city lawyer quite acquainted with death enters the scene as police and parishioners try to ...more
Hardcover, 339 pages
Published January 30th 2007 by Delacorte Press
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Average rating 3.65  · 
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 ·  8,122 ratings  ·  487 reviews

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Rachel Hall
3.5 stars

The second in the series featuring the conflicted female tax lawyer in Stockholm, Rebecka Martinsson, sees Åsa Larsson convey the upheaval and emotional turmoil that her protagonist has undergone following her part in a traumatic investigation which left her with the blood of three men on her hands in her childhood home of Kiruna, the northernmost town in Sweden. Sleeping badly, not really connecting with people and more uncomfortable than ever with the enforced bonhomie of corporate en
Simon Kelly
Oct 15, 2014 rated it did not like it
I feel terribly guilty marking down someone's work as 'poor/did not like it' but the more I think about the book the more it makes me annoyed. The first in the series was infinitely better in most respects, it's hard to believe this is the same author.

One positive - the plot is interesting and well woven. Not too many clumsy red herrings and it builds suspense gently. That was the only thing that kept me going to the end.

The narrative style is not ow I recall the first book. It's very staccato a
Apr 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Because I just finished this one no more than 10 minutes ago- I have to admit it, my heart is still beating a tad faster. YET!

It's got one of those endings.

This seems more of a crossover genre than a crime/mystery to me at points in the novel. The entire middle 1/2 (not the first quarter or the last quarter) reminds me of a 2 dozen character town study in the middle of a Miss Marple Agatha Christie. You become embedded within the town of Kiruna, Sweden for huge proportions of the book copy. Rebe
Nov 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
The Blood Spilt by Åsa Larsson is the second in the series of books featuring Rebecka Martinsson, a tax lawyer working in Stockholm who has been traumatized by her involvement in a murder-three murders in fact. She has not been able to recover from the trauma that took place near her childhood home. Now she has returned to Kiruna and to the scene of another crime, one involving the murder of a priest (as had the first crime). The priest was a controversial, charismatic woman about whom people we ...more
Dec 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
I haven't been able to find Sun Storm, so I had to start with this, the second in the series. I liked it very much. I agree with Lisa that the author has painted Rebecka Martinsson as rather pitiful, but after what she has been through, I feel that it's probably pretty realistic. The wolf story didn't aggravate me as much as it did some of you, but I tend to be pretty literal, so if it was laden with lots of symbolism, it was lost on me. I did like the fact that the wolf made her own way, got he ...more
Lisa Lewis
This is the second book in an interesting series by this author, a Swedish crime fiction writer. I enjoyed it in some ways better than the first, maybe due to the poetic inclusion of scenes from the point of view of a wolf who plays a small role in the story. Unfortunately, the primary character of the first book, Rebecka Martinsson, plays a smaller role in this book and seems such a pathetic character, I found myself wishing at times that the author could have been a little kinder to her. The p ...more
Feb 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: the fans of Nordic crime
Shelves: 2012, bookcrossing
I'd recommend reading this series in order, otherwise you'll get a painful start. Sun Storm is the book #1, which I didn't have the patience to wait to find before reading this one. When starting with this book, Rebecka is introduced as a depressed, barely functional (PTSD) woman who just casually is mentioned to have killed three men. Wait, what? An attorney who just happened to kill three men and is now on sick leave? They left it like that, so it's only 40 pages later when they go back to the ...more
Jun 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
After requiring weeks of psychotherapy and psychotropic drugs after reading Larsson's mega-bummer "The Black Path," I was very hesitant to pick up this novel, which precedes the aforementioned blackness. "Blood" has a similar setting and similar cast of characters as "Black," but it's not nearly as, well, black, or even bloody.

I can see why "Blood" was voted Sweden's best mystery novel of 2007. Larsson's psychological perceptiveness as she sketches out a number of minor characters is impressive.
Sep 16, 2017 rated it did not like it
This is the second book I picked from the free exchange shelf in my office and by now I start to understand why books end up there.

Among the things I did not like:

-This is the second installment of a thriller series featuring a lawyer called Rebecka. I much prefer self-standing novels. Reading this I felt like I jumped in mid way in a show I did not particularly care to watch.

-Main character Rebecka is suffering from a serious case of PTSD after having killed three people in the previous book. T
Fred Shaw
Jun 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Blood Spilt: (Rebecka Martinsson #2) by Asa Larssons, Audiobook

Another priest is brutally mudered in this sequel to Sun Storm: (Rebecka Martinsson #1), this time a woman, hung by a chain from the rafters in the sanctuary. Once again the elders in this church are abusing church resources, and Martinsson, who is suffering from post traumatic stress after killing 3 of the church men in the first novel, is simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

This novel does not the develop the continuous a
Oct 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
Poor Rebecka Martinsson - how much more can this character take? At one point in the book I became almost angry with the author for taking an already damaged person and putting her in another horrifying situation. But it works - and unlike many characters, Rebecka is not "strong in spite of it all" or anything similarly girl-power-y. She's a total mess, which feels realistic (well, as realistic as a murder-mystery novel will ever feel). I also love the style of writing - going from one character ...more
Sep 25, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is the second book I read by this author. Imust say that I found the first somewhat better, but both are pretty similar to one another. I think that this one was a little disappointing. I'm not really into crime fiction, so maybe the flaws I found are just part of the genre rules. There were many parts that had nothing to do with the plot, and that, in my opinion, have no place in the book. Take the example of Rebecka's boss, Anna-Maria Mella's daily life, the wolf in the forest, and so on. ...more
Kathy Davie
Aug 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
Second in the Rebecka Martinsson mystery series set in Sweden in and around Kiruna.

My Take
Larsson has put a definite twist on the mystery, creating both a cozy story and an in-depth look at everyday Swedish culture with Blood Spilt similar to Sun Storm , 1, in that again, priests are dying around Kiruna. It did take a bit before I realized that the first chapter was the murder happening. There was a surreal quality to it and yet it played to the basics of the people in this area.

Business is
Feb 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery/thiller/suspense fans, especially for people who like character driven fiction
Well, I read book 3 first and just completed book 2, The Blood Spilt. I feel the weight of this story like a heaviness in the heart and an ache of sadness for certain characters. The story of Yellowlegs is told so beautifully, at least Yellowlegs has a happy ending. This story is told with such a haunting tone, Rebecka Martinsson is certainly haunted, but so are many of the characters in this story. The fourth book in this series, Until Thy Wrath be Past, is now available for me at the library s ...more
Graeme Roberts
Oct 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Åsa Larsson seems to polarize readers. None of that for me.

Her second book The Blood Spilt vaults her into the thin ranks of the greatest crime writers. The characters are beautifully conceived and drawn, the suspense grows like the beat of an approaching drum, and the emotions I felt were absolutely real. It is a masterpiece that transcends the genre, and leaves other Scandinavian crime writers far behind. Ms. Larsson's portrayal of violence and pain is grit-your-teeth authentic, but she is no
Feb 11, 2009 rated it really liked it
Sure, it's not the best mystery I've ever read, and the portions "told by" the anthropomorphized shewolf were indulgent. But this book is outstanding for its ability to convey a sense of place. Larsson made me feel like I was in small-town northern Sweden right along with the characters. And it was conveyed with a pitch-perfect mix of affection and critical perspective.

I also appreciated the way Larsson dealt with the aftermath of Rebecka Martinsson's trauma in the previous novel. Too many autho
Jun 24, 2009 rated it it was ok
I "read" this book as an unabridged audio on a recent trip. Her writing is good, and the plot had potential, but this never made it as a thriller. It is just waly too slow. It is really a book about feminism and psychology, which is alright, unless you are expecting a detective story. In this one, a lady minister is found murdered and hung up in her church. we then try to figure who done it via an ongoing multi-threaded narrative and lots of flash backs. The priest is polarizing, with strong bac ...more
Feb 21, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Linda  Branham Greenwell
I love the characters - a really great story. Although it was a bit dark and depressing (about dogs)
The story is about life in the northern part of Sweden - and about a murder that happens there.

Rebekah is from the area, and was traumatized in the previous book "Sun Storm". She has been unable to return to normal life following the events in Sun Storm. She returns to the area and has to face her trauma. The story involves murder of another religious figure (like the murder in Sun Storm. It also
The writing was better than the first book in the series was like reading the first book again with so many parts of the plot being a repeat. A priest in found brutally dead in a church, there are shenanigans in the church finances, there are power games in the church and with the local community, there is a second murder of a priest, Martinsson's boss still carries on like a love sick puppy, and the book ends with a brutal murder and Martinsson in trauma. That's enough for me. ...more
Tonile {My Cup and Chaucer}
I must apologise for my lack of posting lately; my personal life has been fairly hectic and I have also been in the unfortunate situation of reading a book that didn’t really grab me. This rarely happens to me, and I find it quite uncomfortable when it does happen, because who am I to judge someone’s writing? Yes we are all entitled to our opinions, but this author is a well regarded Scandinavian author, and that is far more than I can say for myself. So I persevered, as I will always do, becaus ...more
Feb 20, 2012 rated it liked it
Review: The Blood Spilt By Åsa Larsson

Åsa Larsson is one of the Swedish crime-writers whose name is now very well-known; thanks both to her style and also the recent appeal of Scandinavian crime. Although born in Uppsala, she was raised in Kiruna (North of Sweden). Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Larsson was a tax lawyer, a profession she shares with the heroine of her novels, Rebecka Martinsson. Her first novel published in the UK (under the title The Savage Altar), was shortlisted for th
Iowa City Public Library
Author Asa Larsson won Sweden’s Best First Crime Novel Award for her mystery, Sun Storm. I found her second effort, The Blood Spilt, on the Library’s New Fiction shelves. The main character, Rebecka Martinsson is a tax attorney recovering from events that occurred in the first book (she shot several people in order to save some children….or so I gathered). She gets pulled into the death of a murdered female priest that is being investigated by team leader Anna-Maria Mella, just back from materni ...more
Nov 04, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
A wonderful piece of writing.
After our first encounter with Rebecka Martinsson the story moves on with her trying to piece her life together in this second book.
Dark and broody. About place and the status quo. A novel again around the brutal killing of a priest.
Slowly we learn of the deceased's influence for good or ill on her flock and the influence she has on others and the various motives/responses she draws out of others who either love her or detest her in equal measure.
Beautifully told in
Anne  (Booklady) Molinarolo
The Blood Spilt is very atmospheric. As a reader, I was totally drawn into the novel and was entirely into each scene. I could see, taste, and smell the sights and sounds that each character did. That's how good Åsa Larsson's writing is.

I loved the parallel story of Mildred's She Wolf too. Though Mildred didn't live to see see her (Yellow Legs.)

Poor Rebecka. She'd already been suffering from PTSD after having had to kill in the 1st book. It's almost a shame what happens to her at the end, but
Judith Baller-Fabian
Jun 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: finished
I liked this book and will order her first one. A warning to anyone: don't do what I did and start at the latest and work back. This is a series and she gives away some little tidbits (which I tried to skip).
As with all the Scandinavian writers I follow, the writing is lovely and I love the descriptions. Each character is fully developed throughout and, unlike American mystery writers, you just don't know who the murderer is until the end.

Rebecca, one of the main characters is a very troubled s
Aug 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
The characters in this murder mystery were all engaging, well developed, and their motives were fascinating even when not related to the murder(s). It's a good read.

Interesting note ... I am starting to get the idea that Swedish authors in this genre believe that humans can endure outrageous assaults and injuries and survive quite nicely physically but not mentally (another example is the "Girl With the Dragon Tattoo" series). While I suppose it is possible for the fragile human body to survive
Jun 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
The second in Asa Larsson's Rebecka Martinsson series. This one follows Rebecka's recovery from the trauma she suffered at the end of the first book, and her return to Kiruna to heal. Naturally, while there, she gets caught up in another murder. The character development here is excellent, though the story--involving the murder of yet another clergyman--bears a little too much resemblance to the plot in the first. Also, why do dogs have to die in every installment of this series?! Now I know why ...more
Katrina Gonsalves
May 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very good writing, and a good understanding of what the main character would have been feeling after the end of the first book.
Jan 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Really good intertwined story.
Liked the wolf adjoined story which vey Jack London
Straight into the third
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Åsa Larsson is a Swedish crime-writer. Although born in Uppsala, she was raised in Kiruna in the far north. Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Larsson was a tax lawyer, a profession she shares with the heroine of her novels, Rebecka Martinsson.

* Rebecka Martinsson

Other books in the series

Rebecka Martinsson (5 books)
  • Sun Storm (Rebecka Martinsson, #1)
  • The Black Path (Rebecka Martinsson, #3)
  • Until Thy Wrath be Past (Rebecka Martinsson, #4)
  • Till offer åt Molok (Rebecka Martinsson, #5)

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