Inger Frimansson, Good Night, My Darling Reviews

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“Good Night, My Darling ”

★★★★☆

written by Harriet Klausner on 20/02/2007

Good Night, My Darling
Inger Frimansson
Pleasure Boat Studios, Apr 2007, $16.00
ISBN: 1929355372

Justine Dalvik was a young child when her mother died, but her wealthy father, owner of a candy company, gave her his full attention so she coped with the loss rather well. It wasn't too long afterward that he married his secretary Flora who tried briefly to get Justine to warm up to her. However when Justine refused to talk to her, Flora turned physically and verbally abusive. School proved no escape either as a clique of girls led by Berit Assarson tormented her there.

Years later Justine falls in love with Nathan, who wants to open up a travel agency for clients who want a taste of something different. He and Justine meet Martina, a young adventuress who uses her photojournalist skills to travel the world. On a trek together, Nathan vanishes and Martina is killed. Justine explains to the police an intruder entered their room so she locked herself in the bathroom until he left. At about the same time, Flora has spent the last few years in a rundown nursing home. Justine meets Berit who apologizes for her mistreatment of her when they were students; however, she disappears with the police suspecting Justine of foul play because Nathan and Berit remain missing and Martina was murdered.

GOOD NIGHT, MY DARLING won the Swedish Academy of Crime Writer's award as the Best Swedish Crime Novel. Readers will understand why as the storyline starts off as a dysfunctional family drama but transitions into a suspense thriller. The audience doesn't get to know Justine very well although ironically the tale is told by her. Yet that feeling of detached aloofness makes her a fascinating character, able to hold the tense story ine together as fans will wonder whether she is a psychopathic killer or a victim.

Harriet Klausner

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