This significant novel tells of a police investigation of a double homicide.
Arvid Traneus is a ruthless, arrogant businessman who returns home to Sweden after an assignment in Tokyo.
Shortly after his return, the maid finds two bodies in Traneus's home. The female victim was stabbed but the male was so disfigured that police had difficulty in identifying him. They assumed that it was Arvid and his wife.
The action takes place on the island of Gotland, located sixty miles off the southeastern coast of Sweden. It is an island where gossip is a part of life and many people pride themselves in knowing what their neighbors are doing. We also have families that multiply and remain on the island like the Traneus's with children, cousins, grandparents and former wives living close by.
During the course of the investigation we see the relationship of the members of the Gotland police department, their friendship, camaraderie and professionalism. At the start of the story, detective Fredrik Broman is helecoptered to an emergency room with a severe head injury. Through the course of the novel, the action moves to the hospital where we see Broman's health status and learn what led to him being there.
The island life, the exotic setting and the relationships between the characters blend together to create a novel rich in psychological drama and that is inteligently written.