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The following is a selection of reviews of Bad Blood (Original title "Ont blod"):
"With his novel Bad Blood the Swedish author Arne Dahl has made his way to the lead among our foremost thriller novelists. /.../ Dahl’s novel has many literary qualities. His characters are not transient beings; they are self-willed, vigorous creations that live on in the mind of the reader. /.../ This venture reminds me of the legendary crime novel by the Swedish writer couple, Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö. /.../ Arne Dahl’s social criticism is, on the other hand, global much like the story itself. In the end the case is solved, but the world around us isn’t any better at all."
Der Spiegel (Germany)
"The plot is intelligently constructed, and he who penned it is a skillful writer indeed. /.../ Bad Blood succeeds on account of its clear motive and suspense, expertly weaving together the U.S. involvement in Vietnam with the current unfolding of events in Irak."
"Bad Blood is a highly professional Swedish crime novel, and at the same time an insightful and thought-provoking social satire that takes a peak at humans as individuals."
"Bad Blood is like a box of wonders. The entire story is told from alternating perspectives; the events are seen through the eyes of the victim, the killer, and those of the police. Readers who love crime novels will find that this book is more than a common thriller."
Il Sole 24 Ore (Italy)
"Arne Dahl is exceptional among Swedish crime writers, and has invented a compelling narrative device. Yet, the most appealing part of his book lies in the context – the disenchanted glance he casts upon the general social unease and the deteriorating global state of affairs /…/ A furious picture of contemporary society that is much more than a thriller."
"Arne Dahl has with dizzying speed climbed to the throne of Swedish crime literature, as a full-fledged heir toSjöwall/Wahlöö. /.../ His work is characterized by impartiality, lighthearted humor, epic flow and poetic precision."
"Bad Blood is one of this fall season’s best crime novels, and from a stylistic point of view, definitely the most self-assured."
"Forget Mankell. He can’t create that sense of anxiety quite like Arne Dahl. This Swede has not only written really good crime novels, such as Misterioso; he has now even accomplished a true masterpiece. With Bad Blood, Arne Dahl insures himself a position among the best detective novelists. /.../ Professionally built up suspense, multifaceted and believable characters, surprising turns of events, a more or less dejected critique of politics and society as a whole – all of this relayed in top literary style, perfectly formulated and without those unnecessary and wordy digressions that Mankell, at times, gives way to. Absolutely worth reading!"
Westdeutsche Zeitung (Germany)
"A story you definitely shouldn’t read at the airport since you’ll be guaranteed to miss the flight. Incredible suspense. German crime novel fanatics have grown to expect nothing but the best from Scandinavian authors. /.../ But Arne Dahl surpasses them all in terms of ruggedness, suspense and insidious politics. Something else that’s new when it comes to thrillers: The murderer claims that he is the good guy; that he is on the side of the righteous. /.../ A book you’ll read without having time to catch your breath, and something you think about for a long time to come. /.../ …it can most definitely cost you a couple of night’s sleep. A very unusual detective novel."
"One has grown accustomed to pure literary delight when it comes to Swedish crime novels, and authors such asHenning Mankell and Liza Marklund. However, Arne Dahl (the name is a pseudonym) is most definitely a candidate for the best Swedish crime novel. /.../ His novel is a grandiose thriller. /.../ For those of you who plan on bringing this book along during your summer vacation, make sure to set aside an afternoon, or a whole night, to read in peace and quiet. Be prepared to hold your breath in suspense. You’ll also need a safe spot far from any creaking doors and chilly basements."
"…a very good novel that is truly worth reading and that rises far above the average Swedish crime novels. This is partly due to Arne Dahl’s proficiency in creating very credible characters, and also due to his skillfully created intrigues. The characters are mutlifaceted and keenly described. /.../ Like Mankell, he relays hideous acts of crime to keep the reader in his grip. Also, like this successful author, he uses the crime genre to raise questions of current importance in society. However, Arne Dahl argues his standpoint precisely and doesn’t resort to excessive wordiness like Mankell. Nor does he rely on one individual to keep the reader captivated, but rather a whole team of people together with their wide-ranging and strenuous work. This is exactly what makes Arne Dahl the better choice. While Mankell’s material becomes personal, biased and pathetic, the work of his younger colleague is multifaceted, impartial and composed. /.../ Where Mankell makes clear conclusions, Dahl leaves the questions open for discussion."
Funkhaus Europa (Germany)
"Bad Blood is a chilling, rattling and effective detective story that has more heart than one first may think."
Berlingske Tidende (Denmark)