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The Swimmer

The Swimmer [Kindle Edition]

Joakim Zander
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £12.99
Kindle Price: £4.79 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Product Description


'Guilt and atonement and revenge ... THE SWIMMER is an impressive, fast-paced thriller' Borås Tidning.

'Elegantly constructed ... the language creeps up on you ... a remarkable debut novel' Göteborgs-Posten.

'Well-written and incredibly thrilling ... avoids the predictability of the genre' Skånska Dagbladet.

'A terrific page-turner, rich with complex conflicts and a big, chillingly credible conspiracy' Chris Pavone, bestselling author of The Expats.

'At the end you look up and see the world differently' Lesley Thomson.

'A thrilling debut ... a novel with rare ambition with a crackling denouement and strong characters, it richly deserves its reputation' Daily Mail.

'Timely, relevant and exciting' Literary Review.

'Builds to exceptional tension' Independent.

'An absorbing chase thriller ... an excellent debut' The Times.

Product Description


Klara Walldeen was orphaned as a child and brought up by her grandparents on a remote Swedish island. She is now a political aide in Brussels - and she has just seen something she shouldn't: something people will kill to keep hidden.

On the other side of the world, an old spy hides from his past. Once, he was a man of action, so dedicated to the cause that he abandoned his baby daughter to keep his cover. Now, alone and far from home, only his daily swims keep the ghosts at bay.

Only the Swimmer can save Klara. But time is running out...

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 867 KB
  • Print Length: 415 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1781859175
  • Publisher: Head of Zeus (3 July 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #614 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Joakim Zander was born in 1975 in Stockholm, Sweden. He was raised in the small town of Söderköping but, growing up, he also lived in Syria and Israel and was a high-school exchange student in the USA. After completing his military service in the Swedish Navy, he studied law at Uppsala University and later earned a PhD in Law from Maastricht University. Cambridge University Press published his dissertation, The Application of the Precautionary Principle in Practice, which was awarded the Rabobank Prize. Zander has worked for the European Parliament and the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium. He currently lives in Lund, Sweden, with his wife and two children. The Swimmer is his first novel.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cracking thriller 30 Aug 2014
By Bookie TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The Swimmer is a gripping, impressive and fast paced debut from Joakim Zander. The complex plot grabs from the literally explosive opening scenes in a sweeping narrative which moves skilfully between a number of characters and plot lines, ultimately drawing all together in a truly dramatic denouement.

It's difficult to give a plot resume without divulging too much detail, but this story really does have it all. A CIA agent on a desperate mission to save someone he doesn't know, black ops involving a rogue organisation, global politics including a strong female, Zara, who works in Brussels and is unwittingly involved in a race to
find out the nature of encrypted material on a laptop.

I was impressed by the strong sense of place. Brussels felt real, as did the remote Scandinavian island locations. Each character is richly detailed and with strong dialogue this is a bang up to the minute thriller. I whipped through this in almost one sitting. It's not a book you can put down easily and with a plot which at times felt horribly real, it's an amazing vehicle to explore themes of guilt, revenge and atonement. A truly cracking read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Tour de Force - A Must Read Novel 12 Sep 2014
By C. E. Utley TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book really is an exceptional achievement. It is hard to believe it is a first novel. Zander's prose, perfectly translated (into American rather than English) by Elizabeth Clark Wessel, is a joy to read. The characters are expertly drawn. The plot, though complicated at times (because what appear to be two stories are being told and they only come together towards the end) is genuinely gripping. Zander's ability, in particular, to describe fast moving action scenes is astounding. But there is much more to the novel than mere action.

Although the story starts with a bang (literally), it does not continue, for a while, in that vein. Instead, we are gently introduced to Mahmoud Shammosh (a Ph.D student in Sweden) and his former girl friend, Klara Walldeen, a Swedish girl of great beauty now working in Brussels for an MEP. True, the second chapter recounts some strange email messages, which turn out to be of vital importance to the plot, which Mahmoud has been getting, but nothing spectacular happens immediately.

The descriptions of life in the EU quarter of Brussels are all too credible. The parasitic nature of EU bureaucracy and its hangers on is gloriously portrayed. George Loow, the young lobbyist, is a character anyone who has ever had anything to do with modern politics will instantly recognise. He swaggers around Brussels, performing slightly shady tasks for his firm's clients, revelling in the trappings of "success". There are hot young women galore. There are expensive cars, grand restaurants, seedy nightclubs and a certain amount of recreational drugs. George, whose father is understandably disappointed in him, is in his element. But he is weak, not evil.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Swimmer - unputtdownable! 8 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
The most compelling book I have read in ages - couldn't put it down. Very topical and a plot that was completely plausible and characters that I really beleived in. Brilliantly put together with all the twists and turns of the plot and every strand was followed through, I highly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Mr
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I made a pact with myself not to read another thriller this year. Then along comes The Swimmer by Joakim Zander, a book that is in a class of its own. The book needs a reader to go with it for the first two to three chapters, as character, situation and foundation is laid. Then, Zander is off to the races.
No plot spoilers from me in this review, only to say that unlike "Da Vinci Mode" thrillers and police procedurals with a divorced, shockingly shambolic lead character Zander populates his novel with characters that ring true, characters that inhabit a world that feel contemporary to us, he avoids the cliché of the genre and goes straight for what is thrilling about a thriller, you feel the plot arc but you cannot double guess it too early in the novel.
A great debut, and a thriller that should be on the autumn reading list for everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By SteveN
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase it takes place in multiple locations - Middle East, Belgium, France & Sweden, with the different threads wound together in a climax in the Swedish archipelago.
The story is told from a number of different perspectives, often changing on a chapter-by-chapter basis, so, if you don't enjoy this writing style, be warned!
The author has a well-rounded, fluid writing style and maintains the tension well. I think you have to suspend your disbelief in so many "page-turners" these days with authors desperate to find an original plot, but this is a believable contemporary storyline, well-told and the characters are developed intelligently.
I thoroughly enjoyed it and read it very quickly, always looking forward to picking it up again once put down.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!!!! 1 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I Started this book with a little trepidation , not my normal read, I shouldn't have been worried, the author is fabulous, she will be one I look out for from now on, thoroughly enjoy this story it was beautifully written, the different person read for one of the characters was done very good, I'm no writer but personally I loved this book and the way it was constructed I felt I was in the shoes of most of the prominent leads in this can't put down book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars with a good edge. Scary as maybe forces like this
Different, with a good edge. Scary as maybe forces like this exist
Published 13 hours ago by Angela Dray
4.0 out of 5 stars Fast-paced and exciting, great book.
Exciting story line, the events develop quickly, easy to read, I couldn't put it down.
Published 1 day ago by Ada
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good read
Published 1 day ago by Joananne
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read
A really exciting page turner if slightly unrealistic!
Published 1 day ago by Caroline Shearer
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading
Yes I enjoyed reading this book as I thoroughly enjoyed Larsson's trilogy. I lost the story once or twice because having to pick up the dates and times but stilla page turner.
Published 1 day ago by SB
5.0 out of 5 stars A super read
Well written and compelling, this book held my interest and was a really good read! Liked the characters and the plot was credible and well crafted. Read more
Published 2 days ago by Chris W
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
brillant could not put the book down great read
Published 3 days ago by Breda Staunton
5.0 out of 5 stars difficult at first as there are lots of players to ...
difficult at first as there are lots of players to set up, but after this you simply cannot put the book down!
Published 3 days ago by Denise Young
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great read, kept me gripped throughout, good characterisation, good plot - shame about the end!
Published 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Good
A good read, enjoyable. A little bit predictable & its of its genre but it'll surprise you a couple of times & you'll ( speaking personally) think that you're not such a smart arse... Read more
Published 3 days ago by johnsowter
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