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Quicksand: Im Traum kannst du nicht lügen: Roman

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A mass shooting has taken place at a prep school in Stockholm’s wealthiest suburb. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is charged for her involvement in the massacre that left her boyfriend and her best friend dead. She has spent nine months in jail awaiting trial. Now the time has come for her to enter the courtroom. How did Maja—popular, privileged, and a top student—become a A mass shooting has taken place at a prep school in Stockholm’s wealthiest suburb. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is charged for her involvement in the massacre that left her boyfriend and her best friend dead. She has spent nine months in jail awaiting trial. Now the time has come for her to enter the courtroom. How did Maja—popular, privileged, and a top student—become a cold-blooded killer in the eyes of the public? What did Maja do? Or is it what she failed to do that brought her here?


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A mass shooting has taken place at a prep school in Stockholm’s wealthiest suburb. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is charged for her involvement in the massacre that left her boyfriend and her best friend dead. She has spent nine months in jail awaiting trial. Now the time has come for her to enter the courtroom. How did Maja—popular, privileged, and a top student—become a A mass shooting has taken place at a prep school in Stockholm’s wealthiest suburb. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is charged for her involvement in the massacre that left her boyfriend and her best friend dead. She has spent nine months in jail awaiting trial. Now the time has come for her to enter the courtroom. How did Maja—popular, privileged, and a top student—become a cold-blooded killer in the eyes of the public? What did Maja do? Or is it what she failed to do that brought her here?

30 review for Quicksand: Im Traum kannst du nicht lügen: Roman

  1. 5 out of 5

    Felice Laverne

    “No one asked if I wanted to save Sebastian, but you all blame me for failing…” I was truly excited to read and review this novel, Quicksand, by Swedish author Malin Persson Giolito. I first heard about it when it was just a deal to be translated—just another deal that happens every week in the publishing world. Yet, already I was intrigued by the premise and kept an eye out for it. So, you can imagine that when it happened across my path as an advance-read copy, wrapped in an unobtrusive (and pr “No one asked if I wanted to save Sebastian, but you all blame me for failing…” I was truly excited to read and review this novel, Quicksand, by Swedish author Malin Persson Giolito. I first heard about it when it was just a deal to be translated—just another deal that happens every week in the publishing world. Yet, already I was intrigued by the premise and kept an eye out for it. So, you can imagine that when it happened across my path as an advance-read copy, wrapped in an unobtrusive (and probably at the time, incomplete) front cover, I leapt at it. Maja Norberg is an eighteen-year-old last-year student at an expensive prep school in the center of a wealthy Swedish suburb. When she meets Sebastian, the son of billionaire Claes Fagerman, she’s immediately swept up in the ultra-cool image he’s always exuded, the weeks spent on his father’s luxurious boats and in all of the perks and toys, drugs and sex, emotional angst and obsession that their relationship evolves into. During this last year in school, the unthinkable happens, and Maja is left holding the smoking gun, literally, tearing her away from her comfy existence in the ‘burbs and placing her right in the middle of the media sensation court case of the century. This novel started slowly, and in a tone that irritated me at first. Rather, Maja irritated me at first. But I pressed on, and I was very soon rewarded for it. For, all of the pieces of this narrative (this novel is told in interchanging sections) that seemed scattered at first, all moved together to complete the picture as a whole at a brilliant pace, pulling me in with it. This was a superb modern-day characterization of rich teens. Not a single character came off as a caricature or stereotype; they all filled the page, as if they were real people—flaws and all. Imagine Steig Larsson meets The Most Dangerous Place on Earth, and you’ve got a great idea of the sharp insight and cunningly skilled writing that you’re in for here, for this novel was everything that Dangerous Place was trying to be. One of my favorite goodie takeaways from this novel was those thoughtful yet significant nuggets of truth and awareness here, which I so welcomed and respected. I love a sharp narrator, one who can pick apart the people around them. And that’s who Giolito gave her reader in Maja Norberg. Because, what you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find within these pages is that Quicksand features class tensions, the privilege of wealth and what happens when those taut lines cross one time too many. “…you are wrong if you think a good story isn’t necessary. All you have to do is watch Idol or X Factor…to understand that the backstory is half the point. You all want to be surprised when the fatty sings like a star, you want to feel gratified when he made it ‘despite the odds,’ and you want to believe that it’s just bad luck that my parents don’t also live in Djursholm and work as doctors and lawyers, that it’s an injustice you are definitely not complicit in, but you can say it’s wrong and feel bad that we don’t take better care of our immigrants, if they would only be a little more Swedish, learn their new language faster, study a little harder, then the American dream would be just within reach. You love the American dream…” In Quicksand, Malin Persson Giolito not only weaves an incredibly incisive and pulsating story, but she also manages to tackle serious social and economic issues with stunning clarity that made me sit up and re-read her passages. And, her socioeconomic commentary was presented in all of the best ways, so integrated into the actual story line that the latter would have seemed incomplete without the former, so dramatically illustrated by the sharp angles and trajectories at which these teenage lives crossed that it becomes a major undertone of the novel—a foundation of the plot rather than an accessory. Lines like, “Our problem isn’t immigrants, it’s this one percent with too much money,” cut deeply within the narrative and provoke thought all the more, because their brilliant placement within the narrative makes the reader feel that they’ve stumbled across a rare, half-hidden jewel, so that they long to find and pick up another. I became so fully engrossed in Maja’s story, that I, too, gasped at turns of events in the courtroom and I, too, along with the judge and jury, weighed the evidence against her, trying to decide if I felt that she was guilty or not. Giolito was very skilled with the way that she handled this novel, because all parts of it—the courtroom, the jail/solitary confinement, and the backstory leading up to it—were all truly gripping, once the novel fully took off. Even the small annoyances at the beginning came together and re-presented themselves in a new light in the end, which I could only stand back and appreciate. Giolito made me question my own instincts as to whether Maja was guilty or innocent, and I loved every minute of it. I was compelled to turn each and every page, to live these characters’ lives out with them until the very end, and for that I award the rarely given and always coveted 5 stars. ***** FOLLOW ME HERE: Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram | Get a Copy of My Book | Book Editing, Author Coaching, Submit Your Book to Me

  2. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)

    I was quite excited to have won this in the Goodreads Giveaways as it looked very intriguing since it was dubbed as Sweden's best crime novel of 2016. However, I've decided (disappointingly) not to finish it as I just can't get into it even though I've made it to page 122. I could quite possibly be in the minority looking at reviews of this book, but I found it to be very slow and repetitive and just didn't go anywhere. The premise of the book sounds great, and I was hooked at the prologue but t I was quite excited to have won this in the Goodreads Giveaways as it looked very intriguing since it was dubbed as Sweden's best crime novel of 2016. However, I've decided (disappointingly) not to finish it as I just can't get into it even though I've made it to page 122. I could quite possibly be in the minority looking at reviews of this book, but I found it to be very slow and repetitive and just didn't go anywhere. The premise of the book sounds great, and I was hooked at the prologue but that's about all I can say good about it. Of course this is just my opinion - if you like courtroom dramas with lots of very descriptive first person narrative then you should love this - I may or may not return to it one day, but there's too many more books to be read to continue with a book I'm struggling with.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Diane S ☔

    Ever sine Columbine, school shootings have seemed endemic to the United States, happening way to often, always devastating and difficult to understand. When I saw this was set in Sweden I was intrigued. Maja is a senior in high school when this novel takes place but will soon find herself in prison and on trial. What did she do? What did she know, and when did she know it? Management is our narrator and she takes us into her time before the shootings, her time in jail, her talks with her lawyers Ever sine Columbine, school shootings have seemed endemic to the United States, happening way to often, always devastating and difficult to understand. When I saw this was set in Sweden I was intrigued. Maja is a senior in high school when this novel takes place but will soon find herself in prison and on trial. What did she do? What did she know, and when did she know it? Management is our narrator and she takes us into her time before the shootings, her time in jail, her talks with her lawyers and her trial. It is an intense and extensive Character portrayal of how she felt, before, during and after. It is very well done, albeit lengthy, and often intense. All the things that went wrong, things that should have and could have gone differently, people who should have interceded, authority figures who should have had more sense, but didn't. Although I realize that this is fiction, and would not hold true in all cases, this book provided more insight into why these things happen, and the conditions that lead up to them, than any other book I have read, or any of the mental health talking heads I have watched and listened to on television. A very well done and thought out novel. ARC from Other Press publishers.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    “One percent of the people on earth own fifty percent of all the assets on earth. The poorest half of humanity owns less than five percent of the assets on earth. We don’t talk about that. I mean...” Quicksand was good, but less of a thriller than I had been expecting. It lacks the suspense or tension often found in thrillers. Quicksand is, however, a thought-provoking psychological study on an eighteen year old woman on trial for her involvement in the mass shooting that resulted in the dea “One percent of the people on earth own fifty percent of all the assets on earth. The poorest half of humanity owns less than five percent of the assets on earth. We don’t talk about that. I mean...” Quicksand was good, but less of a thriller than I had been expecting. It lacks the suspense or tension often found in thrillers. Quicksand is, however, a thought-provoking psychological study on an eighteen year old woman on trial for her involvement in the mass shooting that resulted in the deaths of both her boyfriend and best friend. It sheds a light on several social and economic issues such as the unfair tax system where the wealthy pay less and the poor pay more, capitalism, prejudice against immigrants, the criminal justice system, classism, substance abuse, sexism, etc. There is a piece of paper taped to the outside of the door; it reads THE DEFENDANT. As if anyone here believes that I am going to be able to defend myself. It’s strange that a court, where the truth is supposed to come out, has such a difficult time saying what they mean in plain language, daring to call things by their true names. Maja is an eighteen year old senior at a prep school in a wealthy suburb. When Sebastian sets his sights on her, Maja's entire world changes. He is the son of Sweden’s richest man, Claes Fagerman. He is a whole other world of wealth and Maja's parents are thrilled at the thought of their daughter with the Claes's son. Maja is thrown into this exciting life with legendary parties seeming to love it all until she notices something darker lurking underneath in the oh so charismatic Sebastian. The story is a very slow developing one. It takes a while to flesh out the characters while also setting the stage for the shooting and the courtroom proceedings. The chapters jump around between the courtroom, Maja's life in jail awaiting trial, and the events leading up to the shooting. I enjoyed getting the full picture, but that wasn't worth letting the narrative feel so disjointed. It didn't particularly flow well. I would've preferred the timeline to be a bit more clear. “I hear you, Maja, I hear you. But I’m having a hard time understanding why you would write that if you didn’t mean it. Do you often say things you don’t mean?” Quicksand is told in first person. The portrayal of the media's impact on the trial was fascinating, as well as the look at the criminal justice system. I appreciate the sharp social commentary. I just think the opportunity to fuel the pages with suspense, twists and a final explosive "wtf" moment were missed. I kept waiting for the story to shock me for reasons tied to the crime rather than only shocking me with societal issues. If I had gone into the story with the correct expectations, my rating would be higher. If you are looking for a Dangerous Girls, this isn't that book. If you are looking for a taut, insightful drama that tackles major social and economic issues, this is an excellent one to read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    Right from the first two pages, we know the premise of this extraordinary book: an attractive, popular teenager named Maja Norberg and her troubled, incredibly wealthy boyfriend Sebastian opened fire in a classroom in a tony Stockholm prep school. Maja’s best friend and Sebastian die in the shooting and there’s little doubt that Maja did it. But does that make her guilty? Quicksand, dubbed a literary thriller, is more “literary” than “thriller”. Those who love suspenseful “whodunnits and why did t Right from the first two pages, we know the premise of this extraordinary book: an attractive, popular teenager named Maja Norberg and her troubled, incredibly wealthy boyfriend Sebastian opened fire in a classroom in a tony Stockholm prep school. Maja’s best friend and Sebastian die in the shooting and there’s little doubt that Maja did it. But does that make her guilty? Quicksand, dubbed a literary thriller, is more “literary” than “thriller”. Those who love suspenseful “whodunnits and why did they do it” should likely look elsewhere. That being said, for those who enjoy page-turning and perceptive literary books could do a lot worse than to read Quicksand. The chapters alternate between Maja’s current life, languishing in jail and participating in a highly publicized trial, and the events that led up to the tragic event. One thing becomes clear: Maja’s parents and best friend are thrilled with her relationship with the very wealthy Sebastian, and as a result, turn a blind eye to her struggles with his dark side. It becomes increasingly obvious that at barely eighteen, she does not have the emotional resources to cope and is inadvertently left high and dry by those who can support her. Malin Persson Giolito goes beyond Maja’s story to depict a Swedish society that – contrary to popular perceptions – is surprisingly similar to ours, with class distinctions, worship of the most affluent, disdain for immigrants, failure of parenting. Eventually, readers will need to draw their own conclusions: who is truly guilty of this crime? Is it the perpetrator herself or is it the society that failed her? Is Maja the creature that the tabloids created or is the situation far more nuanced? This may not be a “thriller” in the classic sense of the word, but it is provocative, insightful, and definitely page-turning.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Amber

    While it looks like I am in the minority compared to other reviewers, I really found this book a big disappointment. It definitely wasn’t a “thriller” as it has been touted and it was very repetitive. At times it read like a bad teen romance novel. I only contuined to read to the end so I could see the “ verdict “ and that only covered a page. I believe books with a similar theme such as “We need to talk about Kevin “ & “ Nineeteen minutes “ were done much better.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Trish

    There is a reason this Swedish novel rocketed to the top of Europe’s bestseller lists. It has everything—enormous wealth, inequality, immigration, teenage angst, drugs, sex, and death—but it also has whip-smart writing, the constraints of law, the quiet and unbreakable bonds of family. Entirely suitable for teens, this is a YA title worthy of the designation. Told from the point of view of a young woman just out of high school, this story recounts how Maja awaited her trial on school shooting and There is a reason this Swedish novel rocketed to the top of Europe’s bestseller lists. It has everything—enormous wealth, inequality, immigration, teenage angst, drugs, sex, and death—but it also has whip-smart writing, the constraints of law, the quiet and unbreakable bonds of family. Entirely suitable for teens, this is a YA title worthy of the designation. Told from the point of view of a young woman just out of high school, this story recounts how Maja awaited her trial on school shooting and multiple murder charges. Maja herself is silent. We only hear the voice inside her head. It is a legal thriller easily as good as America’s Scott Turow, John Grisham, Marcia Clark at the height of their powers. Headlines scream MASSACRE AT DJURSHOLM UPPER SECONDARY SCHOOL - GIRL IN CUSTODYandCLAES FAGERMAN MURDERED - SON’S GIRLFRIEND DEMAND: “HE MUST DIE!” We are inside the jail, inside Maja’s confused thoughts as she contemplates her imprisonment, and remembers moments in her past which illuminate her present. Readers are skeptical of any reason which seeks absolution for such a heinous crime. Maja’s lawyer is one of the most famous in Sweden, taking unpopular, unwinnable cases. Our emotions seesaw between a kind of sympathy for an ordinary teen and the extraordinary circumstances of her imprisonment. We wrestle with big issues like the statement that “the truth is whatever we choose to believe,” and “innocence until prove guilty.” And the voice of Maja is piquant and high-school observant: “…not a single person has ever believed that Mom is the person she pretends to be. But she keeps pretending anyway. And for the most part, people are polite about it and leave her alone…Dad’s money is hardly even fifteen minutes old. And he doesn’t have enough of it to compensate…he thinks boarding school taught him what it takes to fit in, what he has to do for high-class people to think he's one of them. He’s wrong, of course.”We are talking about the rich and the ultra rich. That in itself is an interesting perspective on high school life in Sweden: yacht trips in the Mediterranean, weekend jaunts to southern islands, parties that bring in musicians and YouTube specialists from America, multiple homes, corporate planes…you get the picture. But there is also an immigrant community in the town and the wealth discrepancy is radical. We have so many dichotomies examined in this novel between parents & youth, wealth & the lack of it, white & dark skins to name a few. But what is best about this drama are the legal arguments. First we hear the prosecutor do her best to lay out the case against the defendant. That, and the newspapers give the court of public opinion plenty to work with until the defense can present a few counter-arguments in the weeks that follow. In the defense, we get a careful step-by-step unpicking of the prosecutor’s almost airtight case for murder. It is masterful. Maja is uniquely well-off and privileged, but is she uniquely evil? Statistically, one could argue it is unlikely. But so much more is uncovered in the course of the trial that we cannot break away. What would cause a well-educated woman of privilege to behave in this way? Giolito places an articulate corporate American PhD and editor-in-chief of a prestigious business publication in the position of giving a talk before the high school Maja attends, and she explicates the argument America is undergoing right now, played out by our political parties wrangling over tax policy. “We must be cautious about the social contract. Both parties must uphold their side of the agreement. We must have comprehensible equity. It is not fair if the welfare system is bankrolled by low- and middle-income earners. If large corporations pay less in taxes than their small- and medium-size colleagues, that is not what the social contract looks like…”I don’t want to take the fun out of this spectacular book for you. Academics, teachers, high school students, lawyers, ordinary citizens will all find this beautifully-written and -translated novel a page-turner. This is Malin Persson Giolito’s English language debut. Let’s show her American gratitude and support so we can get all her novels published here. Giolito has worked as a lawyer and for the European Commission in Brussels, where she lives with her husband and three daughters. She has entered the ranks of the best legal thriller writers working today. The translation by Rachel Willson-Broyles is exceptional. Published by Other Press.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Charlotte May

    A high octane crime thriller. It starts with a school shooting - 4 students and a teacher are shot. Only Maja remains. Did she do it and why? The novel switches between the intense courtroom scenes and flashbacks of events that led Maja to be in that classroom in the end. It is a fantastic portrayal of the teenage mind, and how unsettling it can become. The characters felt real, I chose pretty early on which side I was on and so waiting for the jury verdict was as pulse pumping as if I was sat in A high octane crime thriller. It starts with a school shooting - 4 students and a teacher are shot. Only Maja remains. Did she do it and why? The novel switches between the intense courtroom scenes and flashbacks of events that led Maja to be in that classroom in the end. It is a fantastic portrayal of the teenage mind, and how unsettling it can become. The characters felt real, I chose pretty early on which side I was on and so waiting for the jury verdict was as pulse pumping as if I was sat in the audience. A great read, highly recommend to anyone interested in getting into the minds of characters affected by an issue that is unfortunately becoming more common in the present day.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Liz Barnsley

    This was really excellent. Atmospheric, beautifully written and the main character Maja is extraordinarily compelling. It is described as a courtroom drama but actually the courtroom scenes are sparse, this is mostly Maja's story of how she came to be sat in said courtroom accused of murder and incitement to murder. Brilliantly drawn and intriguing - Full review will follow a bit nearer publication. This was really excellent. Atmospheric, beautifully written and the main character Maja is extraordinarily compelling. It is described as a courtroom drama but actually the courtroom scenes are sparse, this is mostly Maja's story of how she came to be sat in said courtroom accused of murder and incitement to murder. Brilliantly drawn and intriguing - Full review will follow a bit nearer publication.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Danielle (The Blonde Likes Books)

    For more of my reviews, visit my blog at https://theblondelikesbooks.wordpress... Quicksand was my first Buddy Read of many to come with Sam from Clues and Reviews! so be sure to check out her review of the book, too. Quicksand is a courtroom thriller about an eighteen year old girl named Maja who is on trial for a shooting at her high school that was completed by her boyfriend. Throughout the book, we'll learn what Maja's role in the shooting was. Did she know about it? Was she part of it? Guil For more of my reviews, visit my blog at https://theblondelikesbooks.wordpress... Quicksand was my first Buddy Read of many to come with Sam from Clues and Reviews! so be sure to check out her review of the book, too. Quicksand is a courtroom thriller about an eighteen year old girl named Maja who is on trial for a shooting at her high school that was completed by her boyfriend. Throughout the book, we'll learn what Maja's role in the shooting was. Did she know about it? Was she part of it? Guilty to innocent, you'll find out before the end of the book! I was immediately intrigued by this book because of how similar it sounded to Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas, which if you've been following my blog or my goodreads, you may recall, I LOVED. The link will take you to my review, so you can see me rave about it if you'd like. Unfortunately, Quicksand fell flat for me. I will start out by saying that I loved the premise. Given how much I loved Dangerous Girls, I was really excited about the plot. What I found was that hardly any of the book actually took place in the courtroom. Most of it was spent doing flashbacks of times that were before the shooting. While I can appreciate the author's attempt at giving us some insight into the characters who are eventually wrapped up in this major crime, it often felt unnecessary to me. It felt like it wasn't adding anything to what I already knew about the characters, and I found myself wanting to skim those flashbacks because they weren't holding my attention. There are some flashbacks to the time of the shooting, or right before, which I did really enjoy. I think those were perfect for the story, and I loved being able to see the shooting in the past and then fast forward to the future and hear about it again during the trial. That said, there was a ton of talk about the trial but hardly any actual trial happening. I kept waiting for it to happen, but what I kept getting were flashbacks to long before the shooting took place. It left me wanting, but not in a good way. The other thing I really struggled with was the writing. The sentences felt very choppy, and it felt like the author was trying TOO hard to write the way people talk, using lots of sarcastic words in quotations and run on sentences, but to me it was distracting. I'm trying to be lenient because this book has been translated from its original Swedish, so I'm not sure what was lost in translation and what was the author's writing style. Last, Quicksand was marketed as a thriller, however I felt like the suspense was lacking for me. Almost all of the characters were really unlikeable, which is okay in some circumstances, but honestly I wasn't on the edge of my seat waiting to find out what happened. I really went back and forth on the rating, because the first 70-75% of the book was 2 stars for me, but the last 25-30% I'd say was 3.5 or 4 stars, because the trial finally happened and we were actually getting somewhere. Because I struggled through 3/4 of the book, I'm going to land at 2.5 stars and round down for Goodreads because I had so many issues with it. I'm sorry to say that this wasn't a winner for me. I can't say I'd recommend this book, but if the premise intrigued you, as mentioned above, I'd recommend checking out Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas. Thank you to Netgalley, Malin Persson Giolito, and Other Press for an ARC of Quicksand in exchange for an honest review. Quicksand will be published on March 7th, 2017.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Alice Lippart

    Engrossing, exciting and kept me on the edge of my seat. I loved the writing and it brought up a lot of interesting discussions on various issues in Scandinavian society.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Ken

    There's something painfully real surrounding school shootings that makes this novel both shocking and captivating. The fact that it's told through the perspective of Eighteen year old Maja who's the prime suspect for the hideous crime makes it even more compelling. The narrative weaves through both the events that led upto the tragic event, as well as Maja struggling to recall the events of that day and also the trial itself. During flashbacks we see Maja and her relationship with wealthy Sebasti There's something painfully real surrounding school shootings that makes this novel both shocking and captivating. The fact that it's told through the perspective of Eighteen year old Maja who's the prime suspect for the hideous crime makes it even more compelling. The narrative weaves through both the events that led upto the tragic event, as well as Maja struggling to recall the events of that day and also the trial itself. During flashbacks we see Maja and her relationship with wealthy Sebastian. The various parties, drugs and sex take center stage here, it empathised that this really is a character study centeric story. After the opening shocking scene at the school, the book took a slight slow pace. But the more I read the more I found that I was gripped. I'd be curious to watch the Netflix mini-series now.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sam (Clues and Reviews)

    Quicksand, the upcoming courtroom thriller, by Malin Persson Giolito follows Maja Norberg; eighteen years old and on trial for her involvement in a mass shooting at a prep school where her best friend and boyfriend were killed. I, for one, am a fan of any courtroom style thriller. I also really loved Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult and the synopsis of this title seemed similar. Needless to say, I was very eager to read this one and was thrilled when my friend, Danielle from The Blonde Likes Boo Quicksand, the upcoming courtroom thriller, by Malin Persson Giolito follows Maja Norberg; eighteen years old and on trial for her involvement in a mass shooting at a prep school where her best friend and boyfriend were killed. I, for one, am a fan of any courtroom style thriller. I also really loved Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult and the synopsis of this title seemed similar. Needless to say, I was very eager to read this one and was thrilled when my friend, Danielle from The Blonde Likes Books, decided to buddy read this title with me! The novel opens with Maja entering the courtroom after spending nine months in jail awaiting her trial. The story develops slowly and, through flashbacks and testimonies during the trial, the reader puts together the story of what happened the day of the massacre. By the time Maja takes the stand, the plot was laced with tension and I was on the edge of my seat to hear her versions of events. As mentioned, the novel unfolds in pieces from present day (Maja in jail) backward to the day of the massacre; bits from the past come together as Maja remembers, reflects on her time spent in prison and the prosecution and defense teams lay out the evidence. Although his narrative style was different, I also found it to be a very disjointing. The novel didn’t feel like it flowed as the flashbacks were not sequential and didn’t follow any particular timeline. Also, some of the flashbacks seemed irrelevant and didn’t really align with the story of the school shooting, instead, they set the stage to develop Maja’s character. I didn’t mind this; I just felt like the shooting became a secondary plot and the main events circled around the development of Maja and her teenage angst/love triangle. My main complaint with this title was the fact that it read like a YA novel. As far as I know, this one was not YA. Maybe it should have been expected since an eighteen-year-old girl did narrate the plot; I just felt like it wasn’t nearly as developed, as I wanted it to be. Nonetheless, I did enjoy this novel overall and would recommend it to anyone who is looking for a YA courtroom thriller or something a little lighter; although the subject matter seems very dark, it is actually a much lighter read than expected.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Nigel

    In brief - Hum - didn't work as well for me as it obviously does for some. 2nd half was much better than the first though. In full The opening chapter of this book caught the scene well for me. Maja is there in the classroom, the only uninjured person, with her boyfriend and best friend lying dead after a mass shooting. The main part of the book starts when Maja, having been in prison for 9 months, appears in the courtroom charged with murder and inciting murder. The story deals with the time befo In brief - Hum - didn't work as well for me as it obviously does for some. 2nd half was much better than the first though. In full The opening chapter of this book caught the scene well for me. Maja is there in the classroom, the only uninjured person, with her boyfriend and best friend lying dead after a mass shooting. The main part of the book starts when Maja, having been in prison for 9 months, appears in the courtroom charged with murder and inciting murder. The story deals with the time before the shooting and the time after as well as the court case. The question is what really happened in that classroom. Various aspects about the case and issues surrounding it are gradually revealed. Initially I found Maja's voice (and it is all told in her voice) rather "matter of fact" story telling which I initially liked. It was somewhat understated and equally had a feel of being uninvolved. A combination of that and the rather disjointed nature of the chapter content did make the book feel it lacked pace in the first half. For me the story became more interesting/compelling around half way through. The courtroom drama once it got going was good. Around this time the peripheral narrative dealing with Maja's life leading up to the shooting seemed far more alive and relevant than earlier on. This is certainly not a book I would have given up on. Other than the lack of pace early on sadly none of the characters really appealed to me in any way and some really didn't get me interested at all with the exception really of Samir. Note - I received an advance digital copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair review http://viewson.org.uk/fiction/quicksa...

  15. 5 out of 5

    Bandit

    Quicksand tackles a situation so quintessentially American that it’s easy to forget its Swedish setting…a school shooting, something that’s become tragically quotidian in the US news and is quite unusual for other places. At least, because it is Swedish, it avoids certain nightmarish logistics and no one proposes to arm the teachers, but it does go on at length about so many other things. The fascinating angle here is perspective, the story is told by a survivor/participant in the massacre now o Quicksand tackles a situation so quintessentially American that it’s easy to forget its Swedish setting…a school shooting, something that’s become tragically quotidian in the US news and is quite unusual for other places. At least, because it is Swedish, it avoids certain nightmarish logistics and no one proposes to arm the teachers, but it does go on at length about so many other things. The fascinating angle here is perspective, the story is told by a survivor/participant in the massacre now on trial for her (well, not life, this is, once again, a civilized reasonable country) freedom. Then again that angle is also the novel’s detractor, because as a reader you’re essentially trapped in the mind of a very privileged very entitled teenage girl, which can get really tiresome really quick. Mind you, the author tries to address this, she’s made her protagonist very intelligent and has given her some really thought provoking insights when it comes to the legal process and culpability and public perception and so on, but it is still a 17, later 18, year old girl. There is a certain degree to emotional immaturity when it comes to relationships, one of which in particular with a troubled scion of an incredibly prosperous and credibly brutal businessman is what eventually leads to the main tragedy. The book unfolds (very leisurely) is such a way that while you know the outcome from the get go, the paths to it are revealed in a deliberately measured pace and exhaustive detail, which is to say it tracks back a year and chronicles the dysfunctional dynamics of young love. Actually, the relationship is dysfunctional on such a high level that it can really be ageless, except that there is a certain level of drama that can sometimes be very youth specific, think Romeo and Juliet, extremes, extremes. It also sands to mention that while some parts of the book can almost come across as YA, it is definitely too heavy and too sophisticated of a story for that general classification. If you’re a fan of legal drama, you’ll love this. It features a genius defense attorney, best money can buy, obviously, since money and privilege is sort of a theme. I’m not even really a fan of that particular thriller subgenre and still easily appreciated Sander’s scenes. If you’re just in it for the drama, there’s a lot of that (parents/children, friendships, relationships) and also some clever meditations and critiques on the social and financial societal structures that are universal enough in nature to appreciate universally. It even addresses immigration, although a reductive view of this might mention that the only student with something resembling a functional moral compass is an immigrant, a serious studious kid from the ghetto who tries to make good. That seems like as easy cliché for a book that seems to otherwise avoid being easy. It is essentially a good read and the author’s real life legal experience really brings an authenticity to the proceedings. The narrative is compelling and it reads easily enough for its bulk, but it is bulky, heavy in every way, and is quite an investment of time and effort to get to the finish line. Not sure if it would reads differently with adult characters of similar natures. And obviously it wouldn’t work, plot wise. Slightly surreal to read a story that seems right off the news and makes you long for the world where such things belong exclusively in the realm of fiction.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    “Quick Sand” by Malin Persson Giolito was named The Best Swedish Crime Novel of 2016. I found the novel to be gripping in the English translated version. Translators can make or break a novel, and Rachel Willson-Broyles deserves credit for making this a page-turner. The main character, Maja Norberg, is involved in a mass school shooting and being tried as a co-conspirator with intent to kill. The reader slowly learns Maja’s involvement through chapters narrated by Maja. Maja is not a likable teen “Quick Sand” by Malin Persson Giolito was named The Best Swedish Crime Novel of 2016. I found the novel to be gripping in the English translated version. Translators can make or break a novel, and Rachel Willson-Broyles deserves credit for making this a page-turner. The main character, Maja Norberg, is involved in a mass school shooting and being tried as a co-conspirator with intent to kill. The reader slowly learns Maja’s involvement through chapters narrated by Maja. Maja is not a likable teen. In fact, all the teens in the story are not likeable (which makes this a realistic story). The teens are from an elite private school in Stockholm with the majority of the teens being “filthy rich”. They are privileged, spoiled brats. Giolito’s writing skill is that the reader slowly builds compassion for Maja while simultaneously disliking her. Giolito also shines in slowly building an irresistible thriller. It’s an interesting look at the lives and pressures of privileged Swedish teens. The parents in this story aren’t portrayed as particularly dutiful. The kids are allowed to run amuck and do whatever they feel like. It’s also in interesting read of the Swedish Court System, which differs from American. All in all, I highly recommend this as a fabulous suspense read. I hope Giolito writes more and gets the novels translated in English. I am a fan.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    If ever there was a book that shows that the Best Swedish Crime Novel award needs to be closely followed, QUICKSAND is it. Scandinoir remains one of the big things in worldwide crime fiction, but, as you'd expect, there can sometimes be a little sameness to the sub genre. Which is not intended as criticism, there's only so many subject matters, styles and approaches available when you're writing psychological thrillers or crime fiction. QUICKSAND, on the other hand, has taken an unusual and diff If ever there was a book that shows that the Best Swedish Crime Novel award needs to be closely followed, QUICKSAND is it. Scandinoir remains one of the big things in worldwide crime fiction, but, as you'd expect, there can sometimes be a little sameness to the sub genre. Which is not intended as criticism, there's only so many subject matters, styles and approaches available when you're writing psychological thrillers or crime fiction. QUICKSAND, on the other hand, has taken an unusual and different approach to a very difficult subject, handling that undertaking with considerable aplomb. The novel is narrated by teenager Maja Norberg, who is standing trial for a high school shooting in which her best friend, several other students, a teacher and her boyfriend and fellow shooter, Sebastian, were killed. She's been in jail for nine months and seems surprisingly calm and sanguine about the possible outcome. Maja is a most unlikely killer, not because she comes from a privileged and wealthy background, but as she seems to be searching for answers herself. The storyline switches between past and present seamlessly, always within Maja's viewpoint, going back to when she first met Sebastian, their growing romantic and sexual connection, and simultaneous relationships with her family, his father and her friends. Author Malin Persson Giolito hasn't flinched from making this character a difficult girl to connect with. She's a teenager with attitude and adolescent angst aplenty, contemptuous, judgemental, more often than not frustratingly annoying. Which makes this a discomfortingly realistic portrayal. A young girl beset with doubts and complex emotions, looking down on her parents, her teachers, her surroundings and society in general, reserving any real emotion and affection - not for the boyfriend she can't break away from - but for her baby sister and grandparents. As the story progresses much about Sebastian and his own background becomes clearer, as does Maja's own involvement. Both of these teenagers have had unexpected difficulties to cope with - subtle and perhaps more "first world" than any problems associated normally with poverty and disadvantage, but nonetheless, there's something bubbling away under the surface of these seemingly perfect lives that isn't right and not good. There's much being said here about that idea of wealth and privilege compensating for bad parenting, unreasonable expectation and disaffection. As you'd expect, as more is revealed, the mental state of, and relationship between, Sebastian and Maja becomes more erratic, controlling and toxic. But was it toxic enough for her to join him in his murderous plan? Did she know what Sebastian did on that final morning, was she an active participant? Did she incite or did she somehow get caught up in the madness herself? There's plenty of proof to say who shot who in that final scene in the classroom, but not necessarily why or even how. Even Maja is struggling for understanding, whilst in solitary confinement, in consultations with her lawyers and in a courtroom. QUICKSAND is very clever in the way that it pulls readers in and repulses at the same time. It gives you licence to really dislike the central character, and the freedom to empathise, sympathise and change your mind all at the same time. Everyone is incredibly real - from parents right to the teenagers themselves. And because of that everyone is flawed, and the things that people do allowed to stun, confront, bemuse and annoy. It's finally a lesson in what you see is not always what you get, and right up until the judgement is read in court you'll be unsure how the rest of Maja's life is going to pan out. https://www.austcrimefiction.org/revi...

  18. 4 out of 5

    Randee

    This is not exactly what I would call a murder mystery. There are murders, to be sure, and there is mystery as to what one character is actually guilty. But, I would call it a novel of suspense. It is well written and I like how it gradually reveals more pieces of the puzzle. I was never lacking interest so I will say it is actually 3.75 if we rated a bit more specifically overall. The first 85% of the book is definitely 4 stars, but it was so exceptionally good that the ending is actually antic This is not exactly what I would call a murder mystery. There are murders, to be sure, and there is mystery as to what one character is actually guilty. But, I would call it a novel of suspense. It is well written and I like how it gradually reveals more pieces of the puzzle. I was never lacking interest so I will say it is actually 3.75 if we rated a bit more specifically overall. The first 85% of the book is definitely 4 stars, but it was so exceptionally good that the ending is actually anticlimactic. I would go as far as saying the ending was both lackluster and unimaginative. Pedestrian. Trite. I am always so disappointed when I am 100% engaged with a story and one that seems like there is going to big swerve only to find myself having a big yawn at the end. I watched an English movie called 'The Bird with the Crystal Plumage." An American watches an attack on the Italian wife in the art gallery she and her husband own. The American is stuck between two glass doors and can only watch as the villain escapes. The gallery owner's wife survives and the American stays in the country to try and help the police capture this villain whom they believe to be responsible for 3 previous killings. Because something is nagging the American about what he witnessed; we, the audience get to see this attack several times over again as the American tries to figure out what bothers him that he can't remember. The movie has one of the biggest bang endings I've ever witnessed or read and for the longest time it felt like Quicksand was going to have the same kind of bomb go off for an ending. Far from a bomb, I wouldn't even say it was a sparkler........

  19. 5 out of 5

    Ieva Andriuskeviciene

    3.5* I believe people expect a fast pace thriller about school shooting in Sweden. That is not what you get. It’s more slow paced courtroom drama. Author was a lawyer for many years. Very detailed sarcastic and dark writing touching quite few social problems. In other hand the story itself is a bit average with very interesting main narrator. Is Maja a victim or predator herself? Probably more YA but I definitely enjoyed it. Shame that I watched Swedish series first https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8 3.5* I believe people expect a fast pace thriller about school shooting in Sweden. That is not what you get. It’s more slow paced courtroom drama. Author was a lawyer for many years. Very detailed sarcastic and dark writing touching quite few social problems. In other hand the story itself is a bit average with very interesting main narrator. Is Maja a victim or predator herself? Probably more YA but I definitely enjoyed it. Shame that I watched Swedish series first https://www.imdb.com/title/tt8686106/

  20. 5 out of 5

    Carmel Hanes

    3.5 for the audio version of this book, which I can't seem to find listed here. The premise of this book drew me in, as all stories about school shootings do. I'm drawn to broken people, with a desire to understand them, and some of the reviews indicated this novel did a decent job of representing what goes awry, leading to atrocious acts. We follow Maja as she is on trial for being one of the responsible parties in a shooting at her school. We immediately know she is responsible for shooting two 3.5 for the audio version of this book, which I can't seem to find listed here. The premise of this book drew me in, as all stories about school shootings do. I'm drawn to broken people, with a desire to understand them, and some of the reviews indicated this novel did a decent job of representing what goes awry, leading to atrocious acts. We follow Maja as she is on trial for being one of the responsible parties in a shooting at her school. We immediately know she is responsible for shooting two people, but not the circumstances or reasons. The book follows a convoluted path between the now (trial) and the then (the months preceding the shooting). Along the way, we get to know her friends and the sometimes complicated relational issues among them. We also learn about family influences on the characters, including cultural factors. It did capture one of the possible pathways responsible for breaking a soul, allowing the dark and ugly to vent. We begin to see how single moments and choices forge badly seamed lives, locking people into patterns they might not fully understand, and don't know how to escape. The flow of the story kept me interested most of the time. What I enjoyed less was the YA feel of the novel. It made sense for the characters, but at times had more teenage angst than I prefer to read. It also seemed overly long, and might have been accomplished with less detail and what felt like repetition. I also expected more courtroom dialogue and intrigue, but most of those scenes involved Maja's perspective and thoughts about what she was seeing and hearing. I got a bit tired of being in the head of a teenager. I'm probably showing my age with that comment. Others may not mind that at all, but it lost a star from me because of it. Overall, not a bad novel, just one that was just ok for my taste.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Essi🦄

    So this one is kind of hard to rate for me. I kinda want to give it more stars for the writing,and the story telling. But I have to rate it by my own experience&feelings about it. The author used to be a lawyer,which really shows in the courtroom scenes. They feel beliveable and are very realistic. Yet,not boring. The reason why I gave only three stars,and why,in the end,I didn't love this book,is that I feel I wasn't the target audience. The characters are teenagers and the story is about their So this one is kind of hard to rate for me. I kinda want to give it more stars for the writing,and the story telling. But I have to rate it by my own experience&feelings about it. The author used to be a lawyer,which really shows in the courtroom scenes. They feel beliveable and are very realistic. Yet,not boring. The reason why I gave only three stars,and why,in the end,I didn't love this book,is that I feel I wasn't the target audience. The characters are teenagers and the story is about their friendships,relationships and problems. I just couldn't relate. The main character's boyfriend comes from a rich family,and they just take of and fly abroad somewhere whenever they feel like it. Or spend weeks on daddy's yacht. Again,not reletable. But! That's not what the book is about. It's about how things go horribly wrong. It's about mental issues. Loneliness. What happens when your parents have all the money in the world,but no love for you. Big part of the story takes place in the court after a school shooting. It's told by the pov of Maja,the shooter's girlfriend. The author really takes you into her head. Slowly you learn what led to that horrible day. I feel like this is an important book. It's not YA,although I think much younger audience would get more out of it. It's very well written. It just wasn't for me. I can still appreciate the writing,the way the author gets into Maja's head&feelings,the importance of a story like this. And the very difficult subject matter. The book won a best crime novel award,so there's also that. Although I wouldn't say this is a crime novel as much as it's a courtroom thriller and,well,YA. Is there such a genre as YA drama? So yeah. As you can probably tell,I had a hard time reviewing this. It's one of those books you know someone would love,that someone just isn't you. I couldn't relate to any of it. And because of that,all the characters were left distant. I liked parts of the court scenes,but other than that nope. Not for me. Thanks for the publisher Johnny Kniga for sending me a copy.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Imi

    Maja Norberg, an attractive and popular teenager, is a survivor of a mass school shooting. I don't want to give any more away about the premise of this up and coming YA thriller (despite the fact the blurb already gives much of it away...), because the opening chapter does such a good job of throwing the reader into the story with a bang, in a way that means you never feel fully comfortable again. I've read quite a few books similar to this in concept over the past few years (Cartwheel, With Mal Maja Norberg, an attractive and popular teenager, is a survivor of a mass school shooting. I don't want to give any more away about the premise of this up and coming YA thriller (despite the fact the blurb already gives much of it away...), because the opening chapter does such a good job of throwing the reader into the story with a bang, in a way that means you never feel fully comfortable again. I've read quite a few books similar to this in concept over the past few years (Cartwheel, With Malice etc...), books that explore murders involving teenagers, the consequences and attempts to discover the reasons behind the crimes, and honestly most of them have been highly disappointing. I'm happy to say this completely bucked that trend and I can strongly recommend it for YA and crime thriller readers! I was concerned at the start that it would just be the same old, Maja would turn out to be overly one dimensional, the twists unbelievable and ridiculous, but I was just more and more impressed with this thriller as it went on, racing through it in a matter of days. Not only is this a great page-turner, I also loved that it explored how teenagers manage to cope with various issues (or sometimes cannot manage to on their own). It's a story about failure, of many of the characters, but does failure make someone guilty? One of my favourite reads of the year so far!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Stroemquist

    Maja Norberg is on trial for her involvement in a school shooting, but what did she really do? And what did or didn't she do leading up to the horrible event? We are thrust into the story after months in custody, when the court hearings start and only gradually we learn what happened. Too gradually, I felt, and a large part of the book had me wondering if I really had to go through all of it to learn anything more from the glimpses of memory fragments and descriptions of a longs row of happening Maja Norberg is on trial for her involvement in a school shooting, but what did she really do? And what did or didn't she do leading up to the horrible event? We are thrust into the story after months in custody, when the court hearings start and only gradually we learn what happened. Too gradually, I felt, and a large part of the book had me wondering if I really had to go through all of it to learn anything more from the glimpses of memory fragments and descriptions of a longs row of happenings that often felt like examples of the same thing. The narrative - first-person present-tense - is not always easily handled and I think contributes to this drawn-out feeling. But, at about the half-way mark something happened and the story took off. Giolito manages to draw the characters extremely well and one part of the pay-off in the second half of the book, I think, is that by now we're invested enough in them to be very keen to find out we're the story is going. Add to that the sense of unraveling starting and it became quite hard to put the book down. A great ending too. Recommended - but don't despair if you think that you're treading water a bit starting out.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Maja Ingrid

    Read Listened to before I'll watch the netflix show! (whenever that will be) This was surprisingly good! This book follows two timelines - one following the prosecution after a school shooting, the other following the events that led up to the shooting. I listened to the audiobook and it was so well narrated, definitely the right medium for me for this book. It's well written, very detailed and I liked the way Maja, the main character, narrated the story. I thought parts would be boring, especiall Read Listened to before I'll watch the netflix show! (whenever that will be) This was surprisingly good! This book follows two timelines - one following the prosecution after a school shooting, the other following the events that led up to the shooting. I listened to the audiobook and it was so well narrated, definitely the right medium for me for this book. It's well written, very detailed and I liked the way Maja, the main character, narrated the story. I thought parts would be boring, especially the prosecution parts, but it was intriguing all the way through!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alice-Elizabeth (Prolific Reader Alice)

    2.5 stars! Sadly, I found Quicksand to be very underwhelming, after being so keen to watch the recent Netflix adaptation. After my reading experience, I don't think I will be bothering with the movie. The pacing was slow and also, didn't feel overly thrillery to me. We get introduced to young Maja, who is on trial for not only murdering her boyfriend's Dad, but also taking an active role in a school shooting. Her boyfriend would also have been on trial, if he hadn't got shot dead. Maja's POV is u 2.5 stars! Sadly, I found Quicksand to be very underwhelming, after being so keen to watch the recent Netflix adaptation. After my reading experience, I don't think I will be bothering with the movie. The pacing was slow and also, didn't feel overly thrillery to me. We get introduced to young Maja, who is on trial for not only murdering her boyfriend's Dad, but also taking an active role in a school shooting. Her boyfriend would also have been on trial, if he hadn't got shot dead. Maja's POV is used throughout, going back to memories from her past, experiences in prison and the courtroom. There were a few chapters that I did enjoy. But, the content was a little triggering for me. T/W- Assault, Abuse, self-harm, suicide

  26. 5 out of 5

    Katariina

    oooh i really enjoyed this one even though i loved the netflix adaptation a little bit more

  27. 4 out of 5

    Chandra Claypool (WhereTheReaderGrows)

    Maja is on trial for the mass murder at her school that involved her killing her boyfriend and her best friend. She has become the most hated teenager in the country but no one really knows what happened and she hasn't exactly been talking. Is she really a cold blooded killer or a victim of being in the wrong place at the wrong time with a self defense tactic gone wrong? While I am usually a fan of courtroom crime thrillers, this one just didn't quite hit home for me. I felt there was a lot of re Maja is on trial for the mass murder at her school that involved her killing her boyfriend and her best friend. She has become the most hated teenager in the country but no one really knows what happened and she hasn't exactly been talking. Is she really a cold blooded killer or a victim of being in the wrong place at the wrong time with a self defense tactic gone wrong? While I am usually a fan of courtroom crime thrillers, this one just didn't quite hit home for me. I felt there was a lot of repetition and read extremely slow in some places. This goes back and forth, starting at the point where she has been in jail for 9 months awaiting trial. We see her relationships with her family, her best friend and her boyfriend - all of whom have their own issues. The book kept me engaged enough to want to see what the final verdict will be... but when the ending came, it left me wanting. This is where I wish books wouldn't say "if you like this, you'll love that"... this says it's The Secret History meets We Need To Talk About Kevin... I kinnnnnd of see that, but ultimately, I think I expected much more because of this statement. If you like courtroom crime and a layered story of teen angst gone wrong, this could be a book better suited for you. Would love to get other's views on this one, so if you pick it up, please get back with me to discuss!

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kasa Cotugno

    Praised as the Swedish thriller of the year, Quicksand arrives with a great deal of advance trumpeting, but unlike its predecessors, is not a descent into voyeuristic mayhem and sadism. Quicksand is told exclusively by Maja Norberg from her prison cell following a horrific attack on her closest schoolmates. That is set out in the first two pages. How she came to wind up on the classroom floor with her charismatic, troubled boyfriend dying in her arms fills the next 492 without a dull moment. Mal Praised as the Swedish thriller of the year, Quicksand arrives with a great deal of advance trumpeting, but unlike its predecessors, is not a descent into voyeuristic mayhem and sadism. Quicksand is told exclusively by Maja Norberg from her prison cell following a horrific attack on her closest schoolmates. That is set out in the first two pages. How she came to wind up on the classroom floor with her charismatic, troubled boyfriend dying in her arms fills the next 492 without a dull moment. Malin Persson Giolito gives Maja amazing powers of discernment and observation, emotional depth and honesty. The writing here is is compelling, engrossing, not surprising since Giolito's father, Leif Persson, a respected criminologist as well as novelist. This is truly a gene that has been passed triumphantly. I admit that the early descriptions of this book turned me off. I'd decided to take a break from violence against children, mass murders, Swedish thrillers, and this book appeared to fit all three categories. However, swayed by a few advance reviewers by people I find perceptive and discerning, I took a chance and am so glad I did. Need I say highly recommended?

  29. 4 out of 5

    RG

    A slow burn literary thriller. The last 1/3 was where most of the plot unfolds. Alot of personal reflection from the main character. Just never connected with this one. Dont expect a crime novel.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sheila Beaumont

    This excellent crime novel was a bestseller in Sweden, and I can see why. It's not only an intense legal thriller, but also a psychological study of the various people involved in a school shooting. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is on trial for abetting in the massacre carried out by her boyfriend, son of the richest man in Sweden. The story is told from Maja's viewpoint as she languishes in jail before and during her trial, with frequent flashbacks into what happened before the shooting. This bo This excellent crime novel was a bestseller in Sweden, and I can see why. It's not only an intense legal thriller, but also a psychological study of the various people involved in a school shooting. Eighteen-year-old Maja Norberg is on trial for abetting in the massacre carried out by her boyfriend, son of the richest man in Sweden. The story is told from Maja's viewpoint as she languishes in jail before and during her trial, with frequent flashbacks into what happened before the shooting. This book is the basis for the Netflix miniseries of the same title. I had seen the Netflix series before I read this, so I knew the outcome, but the novel was still well worth reading for its much more detailed account of the events before the shooting and for its psychological depth. Recommended for both adults and teens, especially those who like Scandinavian crime fiction.

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