By: Thomas Enger
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: 11/04/2014
My Rating: 5 Stars
From the internationally bestselling author of Burned and Pierced comes a dark, thrilling novel that pits a crime reporter against demons from his past—and a killer with a keen taste for revenge.
A brutal killing: An elderly woman is found murdered in a nursing home in Oslo. Bjarne Brogeland, who heads up the investigation, soon realizes that he is on the trail of a meticulous killer who has only just begun his work.
An anonymous threat: Trine Juul-Osmundsen, Norway’s Secretary of State, is accused of sexually harassing a young male politician. As the allegations cause a media frenzy, Trine receives an anonymous threat telling her to resign. If she doesn’t, the truth about what she really did that night will be revealed.
A man on a mission: Embittered reporter Henning Juul finds himself torn between the two high profile cases. He wants to help Trine, who is his estranged sister, but as he digs into their shared past he discovers memories that haunt them both. Memories of a broken home. Memories of a dead father. And as the two cases collide, both of their worlds fall apart.
A special thank you to Atria Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Scandinavia’s best crime writer, Thomas Enger’s SCARRED,(Henning Juul #3), is an intense, riveting, and suspenseful page-turner, a crime and political thriller which reiterates why this talented writer and series is so "talked about" and popular. I would urge readers, especially in the US, to spend time reviewing Enger’s website. Norway’s sensation, is not only a talented writer, quite witty, and in addition, a successful composer (listen to his music – quite divine! Christian's theme is my favorite). As usual, I get hooked on the new releases and devour previous books in a series. I have already purchased Burned (#1) and Pierced (#2), and look forward to reading more of this engrossing six –part book series. Henning Juul, Thomas Enger's main protagonist, is a tortured, yet mysterious Norwegian internet newspaper reporter. He recently lost his son Jonas in a fire, burning down his flat and severely injuring Henning’s face. (a lot of background surrounding this yet to be unfolded). He is scarred both inside and out, and ridden by guilt. Henning Juul i has just returned to work after the tragedy. In addition, there is a lot of other action going on around him. One being his (the golden child)sister; they are estranged and he is not certain why, and a mother who blames him, an alcoholic. He still loves his ex-wife, but there is too much tragedy and memories in the past. He is intuitive and very observant, and perfect for an investigative reporter and he knows how to get to the root of problems and the story. (enjoyed how he draws out people, especially children). In the meantime, he is in the middle of several cases which overlap. Henning is about to resume his investigation into the fire that killed his son two years ago when his editor asks him to cover the murder of a demented woman, retired school teacher, in a nursing/care home.
The murder is being investigated and led by Inspector Bjarne Brogeland who has little information to offer when Henning uses their long acquaintance to gain insight into the case. He knows they are on a dangerous trail of a meticulous killer who has developed a keen taste for revenge. The murder is very mysterious, with the brutal way in which she was killed and connection with pictures, and knitting needles. There are several suspects, however, the motive? Possibly a score to settle with a bad student-teacher relationship? Wow, some bad pent up anger and revenge. When more bodies wind up dead and more taken hostage, the cases collide for an explosive outcome. Then there is his estranged sister, Trine Juul-Osmundsen, Minister for Justice Norwegian Government is accused of sexual misconduct, who goes into hiding. Norway is rocked by scandal and of course he cannot write about her, but wants to reach out and help if she will allow. She believes she has been set up, as she has a secret and has to figure out how to handle and still keep in her marriage and reputation intact. However the case closest to his heart and one he cannot forget is the fire set in his flat which killed his son, a plot developed in the previous novels in the series. Henning continues to follow up on the information provided by gangland enforcer Tore Pulli, and attempts to have a closer look at why the police files relevant to the fire may have been doctored. A riveting crime thriller, and one you cannot put down; however, there is much more to come, as we have to wait patiently for Books 4-6 to learn all the secrets surrounding the mysterious tragedies of books 1-3, and dark childhood of brother and sister duo. There is also a human interest side as readers explore Henning’s personality which ties in nicely with the investigative side. According to the author’s website, the rights to each of his six Henning Juul novels have been purchased by Norwegian film production company 4 ½.
Fans of John Grisham, James Patterson, and Harlan Coben will want to read this one. There are two crime thriller authors, which I am all about currently: Thomas Enger (Norway) and internationally bestselling author Paul Cleave (New Zealand) with his latest winner: Five Minutes Alone (10/21/14) Christchurch Noir Crime Series. Both talented male authors, about the same age, and ah so sexy (move over US authors) making room for two of the finest of crime thrillers and ones to follow! Now, I have to find time between all my ARCs to read all their previous books I have purchased. Thank you, NetGalley and Atria for introducing me to these award-winning and talented authors! My wish list: Audible, please offer these in audiobook format, as nice for traveling.