Saturday 14 November 2020

Invisible Murder

Finished November 8
Invisible Murder by Lene Kaaberbol and Agnete Friis, translated by Tara Chace

I've read the third book in this series and decided to go back are read an earlier one. This is book two. Most of the book takes place in Denmark with the Red Cross nurse Nina Borg, but the story really starts in Hungary, with a young man, Sándor who finds his life upended. He is a law student at university, but he has a secret. His mother is a gypsy, and he started his life growing up with her and his younger siblings, but during a time they were in a children's home, he was taken away by his biological father, given a new last name, and has lived his life in mainstream Hungarian society. When his younger brother Tamás asks a favour, he gets drawn into a situation beyond his control. He cares about his brother, but with his life also in tatters, he feels he has no choice but to follow his brother to Denmark and see if he can help.
Nina is sometimes helping with outreach to groups in need outside of her day job, but she's promised her husband Morten not to do it when he's away working on the rigs. Her relationship with her teenage daughter Ida is a fraught one, with the girl wanting little to do with her. Anton, at eight, is still a joyful child. 
There is also an older man, Skou-Larsen, who is worried about how his wife handles finances, and wants to try to put safeguards in place for after he dies. But there are limitations on what he can do, even though she appears to have fallen for a vacation property scam and lost a big chunk of money. He is also curious about the mosque being build near their home. As a former municipal employee with the building department, he is always curious about permits and details of new developments and worries about whether this one is all it says it is. 
We also see a man, Soren, who is part of PET, the terrorism side of the police force as they hear of a young Hungarian man who has been on some suspicious websites and now appears to be headed his way. His focus on similar online activity at a local university focuses on a young Muslim man who seems to have something to hide.
There is lots going on here, and as Nina gets drawn in to help with a mysterious illness affecting some gypsies squatting in an abandoned gas station, she finds herself in more trouble than she expected, and when Ida gets involved she begins to fear for their lives.
I really enjoy this series, with so many issues in a book. There is racism and religious prejudice, fear of others, domestic abuse, human trafficking, relics of the Soviet times, and so much more.

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