søndag den 3. januar 2010

Sanne Udsen, Alle Guds børn (2008)


Udsens anden krimi markedsføres som halv chicklit, og hel spænding. Fair nok, bortset fra at jeg nok nærmere ville kalde den hel chicklit og halv spænding.

Hovedpersonen, Sarah Berthelsen, har netop skiftet stilling. Fra at være anklager, er hun nu ansat som forsvarsadvokat hos firmaet Svanekilde Green-Hansen Østergaard. Det kræver noget tilvænning at være hos et prestigefyldt firma, hvor alle medarbejdere forventes at bære jakke, stå til rådighed atten timer i døgnet og i øvrigt skrabe så mange penge ind som muligt.

Sarahs første rigtige sag går ud på at forsvare unge Johnny Nielsen, som er anklaget for at have skåret halsen over på en ældre kvinde under et taskerøveri. Sarah ser den flotte unge mands blå øjne, og er hurtigt overbevist om, at han ikke er nogen mordertype. Stik imod sin chefs ønske blander hun sig i opklaringen, og efter nogen tid finder hun tegn på, at en seks-årig dreng og hans far muligvis er myrdet af samme person (mens Johnny Nielsen sad i varetægtsfængsel).

Udmærket plot som sådan, og Udsen gør meget ud af personerne. Spise- og drikkevaner, tøjstil og sko, samt eksmænd, de mænd Sarah kan få, og de mænd hun gerne ville have haft, fylder en god del i romanen, og desværre er det temmelig nemt at gennemskue, hvem morderen er på et alt for tidligt tidspunkt.

Anbefales for tilhængere af chicklit (feminin femikrimi), men den vil nok ikke appellere til mange hardcore-krimilæsere. Jeg lånte bogen på biblioteket.

Sanne Udsen, All God´s Children.
This Danish novel (a library book) from 2008 has not been translated into English. It is marketed as suspense with a touch of chicklit, but chicklit with a touch of suspense may be more accurate.

The protagonist, Sarah Berthelsen, is a defence lawyer who has just been employed by the law firm ´Svanekilde Green-Hansen Østergaard´. Sarah struggles to get used to the dress code, the long working day and the focus on profit.

In her first case she has to defend young Johnny Nielsen who is accused of slashing an old woman´s throat during a robbery. Sarah looks into his blue eyes and is convinced he is not a murder type. Contrary to the wishes of her employers she interferes in the solution of the case, and she finds evidence that a six-year-old boy and his father may have been killed by the same perpetrator (while Johnny Nielsen was in custody).

Convincing characters whose eating and drinking habits, their style in clothes and shoes and their relations with ex-husbands, the men they want and the men they can get take up quite a lot of the space. The plot is not bad, but it is too easy to guess what has happened far too early.

This novel is clearly a variation of the Scandinavian ´femikrimi; to quote from my article of February 1st:

…they regard "femikrimi" as a feminine (girlish) story about life down among the women, cluttered with cinnamon buns, baby poo and menstruation blood, garnished with a spot of crime (chicklit with a murder in it).

10 kommentarer:

Margot Kinberg sagde ...

Dorte - Thanks for this review. I think you've put your finger on a really important aspect of good crime fiction: it's best if there are a few twists and turns, so that you don't necessarily know the outcome too early.

Louise sagde ...

I have been wondring if Sanne Udsen's books were worth it. Now I will not say that I am overly tempted, but for a reader who reads chick lit from time to time and crime as well, this may be a relaxing and easyli read little book.

Beth F sagde ...

Nice review -- I don't think this one is for me. Not so much because the solution is too easy to figure out but because I'm not that big into chicklit.

Dorte H sagde ...

Margot: yes, her plot is a bit too simple, though we don´t get a name, the overall picture is too clear.

Louise: I don´t think I am going to read more books by her, but as chicklit goes I would say it is quite humorous. So for a tired night on the sofa it is ok as it won´t demand too much of you.

Beth: I don´t think it is likely that it will be translated into English either. You probably have your share of mediocre chicklit cum crime :D

Peter Rozovsky sagde ...

I've put up that list of African crime stories that you requested.
==============
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"
http://www.detectivesbeyondborders.blogspot.com/

Søren sagde ...

Thanks for the warning :-)

Dorte H sagde ...

Peter: thanks a lot! I have linked to it on the global challenge blog.

Søren: so you are not into chicklit??? ;D
I am sure you could learn quite a lot about shoes.

Peter Rozovsky sagde ...

You're welcome. I'll look in on the challenge from time to time and maybe add a title or two to my own TBR list.
==============
Detectives Beyond Borders
"Because Murder Is More Fun Away From Home"
http://www.detectivesbeyondborders.blogspot.com/

Lauren sagde ...

It hasn't been translated into German either, so I can't read it in my continued attempts to plumb the more obscure depths of Svandinavian crime fiction. (Sweden and Finland are easy, but there's a lot less available from Norway and Denmark, although I've just read the second of Inger Wolf's books and enjoyed it a lot. A half-Danish half-Croatian policeman with a taste for heavy metal and a cat is at least something new!)

Spotted an Elisabeth Egholm book at the local bookshop, so I might try her next. There's a new Sara Blaedel out too, but I know the consensus on her is not too good. (I like the detective, but the journalist friend is extremely unrealistic and really quite annoying.)

Lauren, single-handedly keeping the translation industry afloat.

Dorte H sagde ...

Hi Lauren.

Great to hear from you!

It is embarring, but I have not read Inger Wolf yet. I usually try Danish authors via the library, and I have just not found her on the shelves yet.

I don´t think Sanne Udsen will be translated as it is quite light entertainment. I have read three by Sara Blædel, and I might try her latest books if I find them in the library, but I am not going to pay for them. Ole and I both like Elisabeth Egholm quite a lot, though it might be a good idea for her to renew herself after seven books about Dicte Svendsen.