The Boy in the Suitcase by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis

The Scandinavians must know how to do high suspense mystery thrillers if this latest book, a debut by this duo of Danish authors– translated from the Danish to English– is anything to go by.  As evident by the title, the story has an overarching theme about human trafficking, but it would be a disservice to say that that is all it is about.  Because what it is, is a most fascinating story with multiple plots that meld into each other before culminating into an astonishing– and satisfying– ending.

If the plot is multi-layered and involved, so is the character development of each of the characters in this story.  Brilliantly revealed, a little at a time, each of the characters plays a distinctive role in making this what it is:  a terrific novel of crime and suspense that spans Denmark and parts of Eastern Europe.  And not unlike the heroine from the series of Steig Larsson thrillers, our heroine in this Danish novel is an equally unassuming Red Cross nurse who is as tough as she is vulnerable in her inability to shy away from stretching out a helping hand– to whomever is in need of it– from a three-year old toddler stuffed into a suitcase to illegal immigrants and refugees in her own town.

In my mind’s eye, this is a story that was written for the silver screen, hands down.  I’ll bet good money someone in Hollywood is already drawing up a casting call. 


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