Policeman turned private investigator Frank Frolich gets in deep with a case involving asylum seekers in Olso. The case, to find the missing sister of an asylum seeker about to be deported, is initially a favour for his new girlfriend but he gets dragged in deeper as things twist and turn. Murders start to happen and clients with strange requests start to appear in Frolich’s office. At one point it seems that Frolich is being set up. He receives no reassurance from his ex-colleagues in the police force that this is not the case. In fact, his former colleagues are decidedly hostile towards him and it constantly feels as if he is meddling in something bigger than he is aware of. Then all of a sudden Frolich’s life is under threat too.
Peppered amongst the case in Sister we get to know Frolich’s new lover, Matilde, as well as Frolich himself, a little better. As in previous books music features heavily and Matilde has a strong vintage vibe about her. There are some great scenes of them getting to know one another and of car rides with music playing on the stereo. I enjoy details like that. Contrasting with this blossoming romance are some of the harsh realities of being an asylum seeker. The cruelty of the system, the desperation of the people and the lack of empathy shown by the system to these people.
I have read a few of prize winning author Kjell Ola Dahl’s books now. They have all followed the police procedural/psychological thriller style. Sister feels very contemporary and has enough going on in the plot to hold a readers attention. It is easy to read with very short chapters just like his other books. I read it over about 5 nights before bed. I would definitely recommend Sister to those of you who want to read more crime fiction from Norway. The book stands alone but I would suggest reading Faithless and The Ice Swimmer first to get the background on Frank Frolich and his career. All three books together could be a nice little Covid 19 social distancing reading project especially if you search for all the tunes mentioned on You Tube after you read them and make a play list.
Sister by Kjell Ola Dahl is published by Orenda Books and translated by Don Bartlett.
This book was sent to me by the publisher as part of a blog tour. Please check out some of the other book bloggers posts to see what they thought of Sister too. The blogs taking part are listed on the poster above.