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4.2 out of 5 stars29
4.2 out of 5 stars
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on 21 May 2013
I enjoyed the three earlier 'Seasons' featuring the complex protagonist Malin Fors, so was looking forward to 'Savage Spring'. I was definiitely not disappointed; in fact this is the best of the series.

This book develops the characters of the Linkoping detective team, and especially that of Malin herself. In 'Savage Spring' the heroine continues her battle with alcoholism, but also has to deal with her mother's death and profound revelations about her family's past. These personal challenges are faced in parallel with that of discovering who planted the bomb whose exposion marks the start of the story.

The contemporary themes of financial crisis, global terrorism and religious fanaticism are explored, alongside the more intimate and disturbing story at the heart of the novel. Kallentoft's trademark of allowing the dead to 'speak' is used brilliantly here, and with great poignancy.

Malin's relationship with her daughter is sensitively developed, again in tandem with the unravelling of the detective story plot about parents and children.

Atmospheric, haunting and reaching new depths for Mons Kallentoft, this is a very rewarding read.
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on 23 April 2013
I hadn't enjoyed the third book in this series so was pleasantly surprised by this final instalment. Malin Fors has dried out & is likeable character (I think it helps to empathise to the protagonist to some degree) There is a bomb, suggested terrorist groups, dead & missing children so at least the story doesn't follow a proscribed pattern & there is a build of suspense to keep the reader guessing.
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on 4 April 2014
Mons Kallentoft is a truly great writer. As well as giving us a likeable, realistic female detective with whom we can empathize, Kallentoft's plots are convincing and full of suspense. But what sets him apart from so many thriller writers is the sheer quality of his writing. His style is poetic and lyrical in places, without being over the top, and in others is fast-paced and succinct. This blend of fine writing, empathic characters and first-rate plotting is typical of many Scandinavian thrillers - which is why we love them so much! - and this latest offering from Kallentoft is a sterling example of the very special genre of "nordic noir". Why can't British and American thriller writers manage to combine such wonderful writing style with likeable characters and good plots? Most of those writing in English tend to be plot-driven, prosaic and plodding. That's why Scandinavian writers are so popular now. Long may they continue to delight us!
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on 11 April 2013
Truly lost for words. I have read Savage Spring, the fourth in the Malin Fors sequence and cannot work out why an author as amazingly talented as this one should have to resort to what I can only describe as 'noises off' in his novels. He gives readers the voice of the corpse (written as italics) in the first volume and (if I remember) the voice of a murderer in the second! Continuing in this style in the third. Irritating to this reader to start with, but by this, the fourth in the series, whether a stunt, gimmick, expression of a deeply held belief, or just page fillers, I do not know and do not care. It drove me mad! Mons K does not need this to sell his books. His plots are tense, his writing when attending to the plot is tight, and his team of detectives second to none. We know Malin Fors is 'intuitive', please do not work it death, she has more than enough to contend with as it is.

Come back to the plots and the team of detectives please. Wilkie Collins more or less dealt with noises off in The Woman in White and even Conan Doyle touched upon similar. I hope Amazon sells us more from this talented author in the future and that he has left the psychobabble behind.
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on 14 June 2013
savage spring is the fourth in the Malin Fors series, and in my opinion the best so far. I have read the previous books. Summer Death, Very good. Midwinter sacrifice also very good and Autumn killing which was awful. I completely lost interest in who done it well before halfway, and only ploughed on till the end to find out how Malin coped with the alcoholism which had taken over her life. I am please to say that Mons Kallentoft and Malin are back on form with Savage Spring. For those who are familiar with the series, as usual the dead victims spirits float around in the atmosphere, commenting on the investigation and whispering in Malin ear. Which I think adds an unusual twist to the stories. At the start of savage Spring a bomb explodes in the town square, killing three people and injuring many. Terrorists ? person vendetta ?. Its a real cant put down page turner. Thoroughly recommended.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 12 January 2016
Of Mons Kallentoft’s series of novels featuring Detective Inspector Malin Fors of the Linköping Police, expertly translated by Neil Smith, the first four have a seasonal theme. The development of the characters, especially Fors, is particularly complex so that reading the books in sequence is particularly advantageous.

Kallentoft has a style that will not suit every taste. In particular, he includes the voices of characters who have been killed in an explosion in the centre of Linköping and who direct their comments towards other victims and to Fors herself as she investigates an atrocity that might be related to ethnic- and religious tensions in the city, to protests against capitalism and the greed of bankers [the book was originally published in Sweden in 2010], or to scores being settled between rival gangs. In addition, similar voices are heard from an unconscious patient in hospital and two children who are apparently locked in a dungeon.

Fors is particularly sensitive to such voices as she admits to possessing ‘a sixth sense for the truth.’ Just occasionally Kallentoft or his translator fail to suggest the particular character of these personal voices. Particularly riveting is Fors’ battle against alcoholism, described very graphically in the earlier ‘Autumn Killing’, and her growing understanding of the similarities between her troubled relationship with her mother and with her 16-year old daughter, Tove. Not infrequently, Tove comes across as being considerably more adult than her mother.

The meaningless violence in the book is dealt with very sensitively, its obscenity being reflected in the effect that it has on the investigators, the media and, of course, the victims. There are perhaps a few too many different strands – the potentially interesting competition between the police and the shadowy Swedish Security Police rather fizzles out as does the storyline surrounding a motorcycle gang. A character is introduced very late on in the narrative in order to tie various storylines together and the final pages are something of a disappointment.

Elsewhere, the death of Fors’ mother and her father’s return from Majorca, her complex relationship with her 16-year old daughter, Tove, and her daily battle to avoid alcohol all combine to create a mood of great introspection that occasionally dips into claustrophobia. As is to be expected, almost everyone on the police team has a secret as do members of Fors’ family, and the author does well to keep the reader’s interest in the face of such professional and personal complexity.

Whilst this is not the best book in the series and might have been cut back with judicious editing, this is still an engaging read, the psychological flaws of the main characters adding to their authenticity, 9/10.
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on 12 June 2013
As with his previous books, full on suspense, mystery, emotional issues, twist's and sub plots, slightly let down a little as you near the ending regarding the links to Malins mind from the victims, "the voices", listening to the voices as stated by Sven to Malin. Ending of main drama a bit over the top. However this like the rest in the series, extremely hard too stop reading and put down. Have read all 4 books on Kindle.
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on 20 July 2013
Excellent. A return to form, whereas I found volumes two (Summer) and three (autumn) disappointing, and Malin's alcoholism was becoming rather unbelievable for a serving police officer. This is obviously the end of the Malin Fors series, and the loose ends are tied up nicely, although quite suddenly. Good documenting of modern preoccupations and fears, although the real culprits are unexpected in quite a nice twist.
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on 15 April 2013
Having read the other three in the Malin Fors series, I had eagerly awaited this book and was not disappointed.Some reviewers have commented on the disembodied voices but although I can see what they mean, I found them to be a fairlly acceptable device that did not detract too much from the text. Finished this book very quickly. I hope that there will be another in the series and that the epilogue was not the final tying up of loose ends that it seems to be. For me this was a thoroughly enjoyable read that I intended to be for my holidays.I thought I would just look at the first chapter, then could not stop reading! The plot is tense ,well paced and credible .The police team are an interesting and varied group of characters too.
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on 3 May 2013
This author is one of my favourites .I found the first half of the book rather slow compared to previous Kallentoftbooks but it did in fact gather momentum and became a real page turner.Cant wait for the next in the series
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