The Hidden Child – Camilla Lackberg

Setting: The resort town of Fjallbacka, Sweden.

Story: A local man is found dead in his home. Shortly before the killing, he had been asked by Erica, the wife of Detective Patrick Hedstrom, to look at a wartime German medal. Was there a connection? If so, what was it? The questions start springing up, and the body count rises in sympathy.

The Good Stuff: Lackberg follows a successful formula for her, namely a powerful back story (events from the war in Sweden and Norway) which is gradually revealed at intervals, in between the contemporary events. The author builds up the tension well, leading up to the final plot twist.

More Good Stuff: Lackberg spends serious time with many of the characters. For example, we get details of Erica and Patrick’s home life, and their husband-wife work-life balance relationship. The characters seem real. Other supporting actors also get loving attention.

Not So Good Stuff: As before, some readers will not like the fact the book has a similar structure to her other Fjallbacka books. And sometimes the domestic material is a tad overdone. But really, the quality of the story and the storytelling shines through.

Score: 8/10