"The Beast", by Anders Roslund & Borge Hellstrom

The Beast - Anders Roslund, Börge Hellström

Book 1, in the Ewert Grens series

Being engaged in a book about pedophilia, torture, human savagery and prisons can be quite a challenge. These co-authors know only one way to get from point A to point B: straight and to the point. This thriller is absolute darkness, a masterful reflection on the concept of justice. It is not the run of the mill mystery and not for everyone. 

This story is raw especially at first. But as difficult as it may be, this rawness is for us to reflect on the second part of the book. The true basis behind this novel noir is how we react to what we read and this is where we find the talents of these co-authors come to play and excel in doing. The prose is razor sharp and different views are dealt with and zoom alternately between the investigators, prison inmates and personal, crimes committed by Bernt Lund and the parents of the victims. It chronicles the activities in detail graphic and brutal language. Everything that happens stems from the murder of two little girls in a basement of a Swedish town, the arrest of the pervert who did it and his subsequent escape from prison. My synopsis may be too simple but the story is far from it.

The second part is absolutely brilliant which invites us to reflect on the possible sentences for sex offenders, the death penalty, on the paradox of Justice and the power of public opinion. The story also illustrates the potentially serious consequences of letting people take the law in their own hands. There are numerous characters to keep track of and the name can become confusing but everything really gels well if you stay with the flow.

Gruesome but a very interesting and captivating story that kept my full attention from start to finish.