Sunday, 23 October 2011


Title: Punishment

Author: Anne Holt

Number of pages: 344

Started: 23 October 2011

Finished: 28 October 2011

Opening words:

She was walking home from school. It was nearly National Day. It would be the first 17th of May without Mommy. Her national costume was too short. Mommy had already let the hem down twice.
Last night, Emilie had been woken by a bad dream. Daddy was fast asleep ; she could hear him snoring gently through the wall as she held her nation costume up against her body. The red border had crept up to her knees. She was growing too fast. Daddy often said, “You’re growing as fast as a wed, love.” Emilie stroked the woolen material with her hand and tried to shrink at the knees and neck. Gran was in the habit of saying, “it’s not surprising the child is shooting up, Grete was always a beanpole.

Plot summary:

A serial killer is on the loose in Norway - a killer of the worst kind. He is abducting children and murdering them - in an undetectable way that confounds the police. He then returns the child's body to the mother with a desperately cruel note: You Got What You Deserved. It is a perplexing and terrible case, and Police Superintendent Yngvar Stubo is the unlucky man in charge of finding the killer before he strikes again. There doesn't seem to be any clear connection between the victims, and with the mode of death so obscure, his job seems impossible. In desperation he decides to recruit legal researcher Inger Johanne Vik, a woman with an extensive knowledge and understanding of criminal history. So far the killer has abducted three children, but one child has not yet been returned to her mother. Is there a chance she is still alive...?

What I thought:

I had high hopes of this book, but was fairly non-plussed by it. I never really felt the story really engaged and the plot didn’t really take off. I got to the end of the book and just never really felt that the book had made much of an impact or had terribly much that was memorable about it.

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