The Rabbit Hunter Book Review

The Rabbit Hunter Book Review

Title: The Rabbit Hunter
Author: Lars Kepler
Published: January 14, 2020, Knopf
No. of Pages: 528
Cover Price: $27.95 Hardcover, $13.99 Kindle

The Rabbit Hunter is the sixth novel in the bestselling Joona Linna series by Lars Kepler, a husband and wife team from Stockholm, Sweden. This novel is translated by Neil Smith, who does an excellent job; readers won’t be aware that the book was written in another language because it is organized and flows like it was written in English. Joona Linna, who is in prison, is let out on a pass to pair up with Saga Bauer to investigate a series of murders where a nursery rhyme is played, then each victim is killed in a nineteen minute scenario. Joona and Saga are finally able to relate the murders to a woman who was raped repeatedly many years prior at a boarding school, and the victims are related to that rape. Most of the victims are living fairly ordinary, albeit mostly successful, lives, one happily married with children, one a famous television chef, one a well-known diplomat, and one a woman in a mental hospital, to name a few. All have been negatively affected by their time at the boarding school.

There are a few differences in this novel from the previous Joona Linna novels, in that there is a fair amount of sexual content – some necessary for telling the story, and some absolutely unnecessary, which is surprising and disappointing to those who’d rather keep their reading clean. The novel does contain graphic violence – horrible murders - which is upsetting, but gives the reader a sense of how important it is for the characters to solve the murders and for the powers that be to release Joona Linna from prison. Joona Linna and Saga Bauer are both unconventional protagonists – very different from those in American novels - and are well-developed by Kepler, as well as beloved by readers. The dénouement is, as usual surprising and well-calculated which keeps readers on their toes.

This novel is one that readers will be unable to put down. It is well-written, fascinating, and gives a different twist to the conventional thriller due to the Scandinavian setting and ambience. Fans will scramble to pick up this novel, and will dedicate a day or two to read it immediately, while anticipating the next in the series. Those who are not yet fans, are really missing a great series and should pick up the novels and read them in order. Highly recommended.

Special thanks to NetGalley for supplying a review copy of this book.

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