The Department of Sensitive Crimes

The Department of Sensitive Crimes : A Detective Varg novel

3.48 (4,217 ratings by Goodreads)

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Description

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo introduced us to 'Scandi noir'. Now, welcome to Alexander McCall Smith's world of Scandi blanc . . .

Ulf Varg works in Malmo's Department of Sensitive Crimes. Like all Scandinavian detectives he has his issues. In his case these include his unresolved feelings for his colleague, Anna; his impatience over the seeming incompetence of his irritating colleague Blomquist; and his concerns for the health of his hearing-impaired dog, Marten, the only dog in Sweden (and possibly all Scandinavia) who is able to lip-read (in Swedish).

Along with his colleagues, Ulf is called upon to investigate a bizarre attack on a market trader, the disappearance of a handsome man who may or may not exist, and the affairs of a variety of young female students whose relationships with one another leave a great deal to be desired.

Ulf and his team come to realise that the world is a puzzling place, lycanthropy (were-wolfism) exists and fish might have something to teach us. There is so much to learn if you are a Swedish detective, and in the first book in this new quasi-Scandinavian series, Ulf Varg embarks on these lessons with spirit and good humour.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 272 pages
  • 132 x 206 x 24mm | 220g
  • Abacus
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0349143331
  • 9780349143330
  • 1,589,198

Review Text

McCall Smith's continuing warm-heartedness makes Ulf such unfailingly good company Reader's Digest
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Review quote

McCall Smith has a supreme talent for sketching truly likeable characters who are free to pontificate on all sorts of areas of interest . . . McCall Smith's humour is usually described as gentle, but readers familiar with the rhythm of his writing will find plenty here to make them snort * Scotsman * Alexander McCall Smith reached dizzying new heights of whimsy with his 'Scandi-blanc' experiment, The Department of Sensitive Crimes * The Scotsman (Scottish Books of 2019) * Wonderfully soothing and relaxing; the books do not make you sit on the edge of your seat but sink deeper into your chair * Telegraph, 'Best thrillers and crime fiction of 2019 so far' * Heaven is in the detail with this sort of escapist writing. It's like AA Milne meets Karl Ove Knausgaard. McCall Smith knows how to create a world full of sweet things and emotionally true moments and in this new series of "Scandi blanc" delivers exactly what his fans will be hoping for -- Melissa Katsoulis * Financial Times * Wonderfully soothing and relaxing . . . while McCall Smith's world may be a highly selective reshaping of the real one, he has the creative power to make it seem, in its quiet way, truer than truth . . . it left me with a warm glow that lasted through several news bulletins * Telegraph * While the crimes may be inconsequential, the conversations are fascinating . . . McCall's humour is usually described as gentle, but readers familiar with the rhythm of his writing will find plenty here to make them snort * Independent i * Unfailingly good company * Readers Digest * McCall Smith's continuing warm-heartedness makes Ulf such unfailingly good company * Reader's Digest *
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About Alexander McCall Smith

Alexander McCall Smith is the author of over one hundred books on a wide array of subjects, including the award-winning The No.1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. He is also the author of the Isabel Dalhousie novels and the world's longest-running serial novel, 44 Scotland Street. His books have been translated into forty-six languages. Alexander McCall Smith is Professor Emeritus of Medical Law at the University of Edinburgh and holds honorary doctorates from thirteen universities.
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Rating details

4,217 ratings
3.48 out of 5 stars
5 14% (600)
4 36% (1,505)
3 37% (1,575)
2 10% (419)
1 3% (118)
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