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The Nightmare (Hardcover)

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The Nightmare Cover Image
By Lars Kepler, Laura A. Wideburg (Translator)
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Staff Reviews

I stumbled my way through The Hypnotist by Lars Kepler, possibly it was due to the translation, or just the meandering middle section, but the overall story seemed disjointed as if the authors attempted to splice two completely different stories together.

So why did I bother to pick up The Nightmare the next book in the series? Possibly because of the one word title, or possibly the bright orange cover (there's a trend of them this summer), or maybe I'm willing to give folks a second chance. In all honesty, it was the promise I would learn more about the lead investigator Joona Linna that intrigued me, that and my insatiable curiosity when the book jacket hinted at impossible suicides.

Whatever the two authors did this time out, they did right. I had a hard time putting the The Nightmare down. From the opening sequence of events when Inspector Joona steps in with his steely calm resolve, convincing the powers above there is a lot more going on then what appears on the surface.

A drowning victim found in bed on a boat, but the body is dry. In an apartment, a man is found hanging, an apparent suicide in a closed room with no furniture nearby. These are the two seemingly unrelated cases that are presented to Joona at the beginning. Attention to detail, and a dogged approach to following his own instincts keeps the Inspector focused and moving forward.

There is quite a bit of jumping around in the storytelling, but it's like having a large box of puzzle pieces laid out. First you start with the straight-edged pieces and slowly work sections of like colors before the picture begins to resemble the cover artwork. The pieces all come together and there is plenty of action and thrills throughout to keep the reader flipping pages.

Overall, they definitely hit my 'must read' list for the future with this installment, and I would recommend this book as the starting point to anyone wishing to begin the series

Adele completely concurs. I read The Nightmare based on Gina’s recommendation and loved it. I can’t wait for the next Inspector Joona book!

— Special Guest


Lars Kepler returns with a piercing, bestselling sequel to The Hypnotist

After spellbinding audiences in The Hypnotist, Detective Inspector Joona Linna is back in The Nightmare, an internationally bestselling Swedish thriller published to critical acclaim in dozens of countries. As the Swedish newspaper Arbetarbladet put it, “The reader is ready to sell his own soul for the opportunity to read this book without interruption, in one sitting.”

On a summer night, police recover the body of a young woman from an abandoned pleasure boat drifting around the Stockholm archipelago. Her lungs are filled with brackish water, and the forensics team is sure that she drowned. Why, then, is the pleasure boat still afloat, and why are there no traces of water on her clothes or body?

The next day, a man turns up dead in his state apartment in Stockholm, hanging from a lamp hook. All signs point to suicide, but the room has a high ceiling, and there’s not a single piece of furniture around—nothing to climb on.

Joona Linna begins to piece together the two mysteries, but the logistics are a mere prelude to a dizzying and dangerous course of events. At its core, the most frightening aspect of The Nightmare isn’t its gruesome crimes—it’s the dark psychology of its characters, who show us how blind we are to our own motives.


About the Author

Lars Kepler is a pseudonym for a literary couple who live and write in Sweden.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780374115333
Publisher: Sarah Crichton Books
Publication Date: July 3rd, 2012
Pages: 512