Sunday, October 02, 2016
The Latest and Best in Crime Fiction
Karin Fossum may be the most unsentimental crime novelist since Ruth Rendell’s alter ego, Barbara Vine. On the very first page of HELL FIRE (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $24), a young mother and her 4-year-old son lie dead of multiple stab wounds in the ramshackle little trailer in the Norwegian woods where they had spent the night. Not far into the story, we’re introduced to a character who, we’ll very soon deduce, is almost certainly the killer. Surprisingly, anticipating the ending doesn’t destroy the suspense; in fact, imagining the horror that awaits actually increases our sense of dread.