"The Indian Bride" brings us a new episode in the Inspector Sejer series by Karin Fossum. It's 1955 and Gundar Joman is a 51 year-old man from Norway who is on a mission. He leaves his comfortable home to go to India in search of a bride. He succeeds, marrying a woman named Poona, a waitress. She stays behind when Gundar returns home to prepare his sister Marie to meet his new bride. The day Poona is due to arrive in Norway, Marie is in a terrible car accident which forces Gundar to stay by her side. To make matters worse, Poona is missing - whereabouts unknown. Inspector Sejer enters the story when the badly beaten body of a woman is found in an empty field. Yes, it's Poona. The fabric of Gundar's life has become unwound and he is desperate to make sense of it. Sejer's efforts to find the attacker are constantly thwarted by the closed-mouthed villagers who don't talk to outsiders.
Fans of American mysteries may take some time to get accustomed to the writing style of Karin Fossum. Her stories give us a native's view of the Norwegian culture, and are much more people driven than the police procedurals that we see so much of on television. It's a tribute to the old master detectives of literature with the Norwegian countryside as a backdrop, and well worth reading.
Rainbo Electronic Reviews published this review in our April, 2008 issue.
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