Summary and book reviews of Don't Look Back: An Inspector Sejer Mystery by Karin Fossum

Don't Look Back: An Inspector Sejer Mystery

by Karin Fossum

Don't Look Back: An Inspector Sejer Mystery by Karin Fossum X
Don't Look Back: An Inspector Sejer Mystery by Karin Fossum
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Mar 2004, 304 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2005, 312 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
BookBrowse Review Team

Buy This Book

About this Book

Book Summary

Critically acclaimed across Europe, Karin Fossum's Inspector Sejer novels are masterfully constructed, psychologically convincing, and compulsively readable. They evoke a world that is at once profoundly disturbing and terrifyingly familiar.

Meet Inspector Sejer: smart and enigmatic, tough but fair. At the foot of the imposing Kollen Mountain lies a small, idyllic village, where neighbors know neighbors and children play happily in the streets. But when the body of a teenage girl is found by the lake at the mountaintop, the town's tranquility is shattered forever. Annie was strong, intelligent, and loved by everyone. What went so terribly wrong? Doggedly, yet subtly, Inspector Sejer uncovers layer upon layer of distrust and lies beneath the town's seemingly perfect façade.

Critically acclaimed across Europe, Karin Fossum's Inspector Sejer novels are masterfully constructed, psychologically convincing, and compulsively readable. They evoke a world that is at once profoundly disturbing and terrifyingly familiar.

Chapter 1

Ragnhild opened the door cautiously and peered out. Up on the road everything was quiet, and a breeze that had been playing among the buildings during the night had finally died down. She turned and pulled the doll's carriage over the threshold.

"We haven't even eaten yet," Marthe complained.

She helped push the carriage.

"I have to go home. We're going out shopping," Ragnhild said.

"Shall I come over later?"

"You can if you like. After we've done the shopping."

She was on the gravel now and began to push the carriage toward the front gate. It was heavy going, so she turned it around and pulled it instead.

"See you later, Ragnhild."

The door closed behind her—a sharp slam of wood and metal. Ragnhild struggled with the gate, but she mustn't be careless. Marthe's dog might get out. He was watching her intently from beneath the garden table. When she was sure that the gate was properly closed, she started ...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
  • award image

Reviews

BookBrowse Review

BookBrowse

Karin Fossum is well known in her native country of Norway and much of Europe where her books are bestsellers and she is known as 'Norway's Queen of Crime', but this is her first book to be published in the USA. The setting would seem to be just right for a 'cozy' detective mystery - a picturesque valley town - but this is not a cozy tale and as the nasty surprises build up it becomes apparent that all is not as it would seem to be in this insular, homogenous small town.   (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).

Full Review (180 words).

This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.

Media Reviews

The New York Times - Marilyn Stasio
Don't Look Back, the first of Karin Fossum's police procedurals to be published in the United States, is set in a picturesque Norwegian village at the foot of a mountain, in a valley at the edge of the sea. But there's no mistaking this psychologically astute, subtly horrifying crime study for a cozy village mystery, or its soulful detective for one of those brainy European sleuths who make a parlor game of homicide.

The Washington Post - Maureen Corrigan
Fossum's novels starring Inspector Konrad Sejer have been critically acclaimed throughout Europe, and it's easy to see why. Sejer is one of those deadpan police philosopher types the Northern climes generate.

Publishers Weekly
In Fossum's moody and subtle U.S. debut, the fifth in her Inspector Sejer series, the popular Norwegian mystery writer displays her mastery of psychological suspense.

Library Journal
Fans of such Scandinavian crime writers as Henning Mankell, Helene Turnsten, and Per Wahlee and Maj Sjewal will snap this up. Strongly recommended for most collections.

Kirkus Reviews
Murder strikes a placid Norwegian village in this deceptively understated novel.....Top-drawer evidence that a practiced hand can still ring memorably creepy changes on the classic whodunit.

Booklist - Bill Ott
Insularity, or the loss of it, is at the heart of the Scandinavian crime novel.....A disturbing ending, fraught with ambiguity, leaves the reader as unsettled as the shell-shocked villagers. Add another memorable series to the growing list of superb European procedurals.

Reader Reviews

Kathy

Could NOT put it down!
I started this book with some hesitation; translations always give me pause. But no matter here, it was a wonderful book...so many threads woven through the story of one girl's murder. I loved Konrad Sejer and the way the author delved into his ...   Read More

Write your own review!

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Readalikes

Readalikes Full readalike results are for members only

More books by Karin Fossum

If you liked Don't Look Back: An Inspector Sejer Mystery, try these:

Non-members are limited to two results. Become a member
Search Readalikes again
How we choose readalikes
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Perfectionists
    The Perfectionists
    by Simon Winchester
    We seek precision in our lives every day. We want to drive from home to work and work to home safely...
  • Book Jacket: Beauty in the Broken Places
    Beauty in the Broken Places
    by Allison Pataki
    Ernest Hemingway wrote that we are "strong at the broken places," and Allison Pataki found that to ...
  • Book Jacket
    Love and Other Consolation Prizes
    by Jamie Ford
    Love and Other Consolation Prizes was read and reviewed by 22 BookBrowse members for First ...
  • Book Jacket: The Judge Hunter
    The Judge Hunter
    by Christopher Buckley
    In London 1664, Balthasar de St. Michel or "Balty" has no discernable skills besides pestering his ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Twelve-Mile Straight by Eleanor Henderson

An audacious American epic set in rural Georgia during the years of the Depression and Prohibition.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Clock Dance
    by Anne Tyler

    A delightful novel of one woman's transformative journey, from the best-selling and Pulitzer Prize-winning writer.
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The Family Tabor
    by Cherise Wolas

    Wolas's gorgeously rendered sophomore novel reckons with the nature of the stories we tell ourselves.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win A Place for Us

A Place For Us

A deeply moving story of love, identity and belonging--the first novel from Sarah Jessica Parker's new imprint.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

H, W H A Problem

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.