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BAD WOLF
by Nele Neuhaus and Steven T. Murray, trans.
Minotaur Books, January 2014
416 pages
$25.99
ISBN: 1250043999


Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Though Nele Neuhaus is already a big hit in her native Germany, BAD WOLF is only the second of her novels to appear in English. It features the German police partners Inspectors Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein. In this book the team stumbles upon several crimes that might all link to one another, but the crimes aren't easy to take apart. What could an unidentified murdered teenage girl found in a river and a famous TV reporter who was attacked and left for dead in the trunk of her car possibly have in common? As the inspectors investigate, these divergent storylines slowly come together in a very satisfying but grisly way and then race to a truly satisfying end.

Neuhaus is very good at what she does. She makes German law and police procedures easily accessible to an American audience so that even though this is taking place in another country, the reader will feel at home. She builds the suspense and does a good job holding the reader's attention. The story slowly comes together as the pieces are unraveled and the clues are revealed. I found Pia, in particular, very relatable and likeable.

The subject matter is tough to swallow. The child abuse and a horrific attack on a woman aren't recounted in detail, but readers learn enough to turn their stomachs. Still, I felt nothing was done for sensationalist purposes. Rather, Neuhaus handles a sensitive topic in a very respectful and still entertaining manner. And the audience will keep guessing, right up to the end, about who the bad guys are, and who is a red herring.

All in all, though the character development wasn't handled perfectly, I loved the book. I couldn't put it down and was riveted from beginning to end. And I am looking forward to Neuhaus' next thriller.

Paris Abell is blogger and writer who works as a lawyer in New York City.

Reviewed by Paris Abell, January 2014

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)


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