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When The Devil Holds The Candle: A Book Review

Updated on December 2, 2012

When the Devil Holds the Candle is a book by Karin Fossum, published by Hartcourt and translated by Felicity David and reads very well in English. This is a book in the Inspector Konrad Sejer and Jacob Skarre series. It won the Gumshoe award for the best European novel published in the United States in 2006.

At the beginning of this book we are told that Andreas is missing. Fossum tells us about Andreas and his friend Zipp. Andreas and Zipp are young adults who are petty thieves and minor delinquents. About a quarter of the way into the story we find out why Andreas is missing.

Several subplots wander back and forth with each other and touch at the end to resolve the plot. The characters are compelling and the reader develops a feeling for each.

This isn’t a whodunit in the traditional sense. When the Devil Holds the Candle is a psychological novel that explores the minds of the various characters and their relationship to each other. There are twists, and turns as it progresses to the final revelations at the end. This is an engrossing book, and I recommend it. It’s a good read.


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