TITLE: The Fire Witness
AUTHOR: Lars Kepler
SERIES: Joona Linna #3
GENRES: Mystery, Thriller
FORMAT: Finnish Hardback
Flora Hansen calls herself a medium and makes a living by pretending to commune with the dead. But after a gruesome murder at a rural home for wayward girls, Hansen begins to suffer visions that are all too real. She calls the police, claiming to have seen a ghost, but only one detective puts aside his skepticism long enough to listen: Joona Linna.
Linna has spent more time at the scene of the crime than any other detective would. The case seems obvious on the face of it: One of the girls at the home escaped in the middle of the night, leaving behind a bloody bed with a hammer under the pillow. But why does Hansen insist that the murder instrument was a stone, not a hammer? And what’s the story behind the dark red grain of sand, almost like a splinter from a ruby, stuck beneath the dead girl’s fingernail? As Linna refuses to accept easy answers, his search leads him into darker, more violent territory, and finally to a shocking confrontation with a figure from his past.
Just as Lars Kepler’s The Hypnotist and The Nightmare did, The Fire Witness has spent months at number one on the Swedish bestseller lists. As the newspaper Dagens Nyheter put it, you start the thriller “on the subway home, keep reading at the dinner table, and then don’t stop until well into the wee hours.” Kepler writes with the force of Stieg Larsson and the plotting of Jo Nesbø. The Fire Witness is an unflinching page-turner, sure to join the ranks of its predecessors as an international sensation.
The Fire Witness is definitely by far the best book in Joona Linna series so far. These just keep getting better and better.
The best thing in this book was the fact that we finally learn about Joona’s past, what happened to his family. So far it has only vaguely been mentioned that he had a wife and a daughter but we never got to know the story of them. But now it finally happened.
From that we get to Joona himself. He has grown as a character, not much but he has. He’s not as closed off as he has been and he has become more relaxed, if that’s the right way to describe him.
He also finally seems to be the actual main character in his own series, not just one of the detectives popping up here and there.
Joona has kept his determination, even grown some more of that. Even though he is currently suspended from work, he still finds a way to work around that and be part of the case at Birgitta home. And I love it!
The cases have become more detailed and gruesome. And that’s exactly the way I want my detective thrillers to be. I want all the details, not just some vague explanation of what happened.
You are able to work your own investigation throughout the whole case. You get knew clues all the time and you just have to try and think who is behind all of it. Yet still I was surprised at the end!
All in all I really liked this one! I want the next book immediately. Because the ending definitely left me hanging and trying to figure out what will come down to Joona in the next book.