Today I have a guest review written by the amazing people at Sainsburys Ebooks! Enjoy!
Review: Snow White Must Die
Title: Snow White Must Die
Author: Nele Neuhaus
My Rating: 4 stars
Snow White Must Die is the fourth in a German crime novel series, but the first to be translated into English, but don’t let that put you off, this is a great standalone mystery thriller, and is no fairytale!
On a wet November day two detectives, Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein, are summoned to a crime scene; a woman, Rita, has fallen from a bridge onto a vehicle below, a witness claims she has been pushed. The investigation takes them to a village near Frankfurt, where they encounter the victim’s son Tobias.
Eleven years earlier, on a September evening, two seventeen-year-old girls vanished from the very same small village, Altenhain, leaving no trace. Rita’s son, Tobias, finds himself at the centre of a flimsy trial for the murder of the two girls – his girlfriend and childhood friend – a crime which he vehemently denied. While he is in prison the villagers turn on his family, driving them out of business and treating them as pariahs.
When Tobias returns to his home village years later after serving his prison sentence, the village is again disturbed by the events of the past. Then, after Tobias’ family are subjected to attacks, detectives Kirchhoff and Bodenstein are sent to monitor the goings on in the tiny village, was his return linked to the death of his mother. The atmosphere is tense and the detectives find the village community puts up a wall of silence.
Then, when the past repeats itself and another girl goes missing, the two detectives are thrust into a race against time to solve the mystery before the villagers take the law into their own hands and act on their suspicions.
About the Author:
Nele Neuhaus is a 46-year-old German mystery author who has just had this, her first book, published in English despite selling millions in her native tongue. She started writing at a very early age, creating stories about horse and other animals by hand in her exercise books. She first began selling her books from the offices of her ex-husband’s meat packing factory where she also worked; she would offer customers who had come to buy meat and sausages her works until eventually people would come just for her books. In 2005 she published her first book, Swimming with Sharks and since then has enjoyed great literary success with her crime series from which Snow White Must Die is taken.
This is a great, atmospheric, dark and thrilling mystery novel which examines small town communities. It is the tale of a tight knit village where gossip, power and influence reign supreme and mob mentality prevails. The novel has all the suspense and tension of a Scandi-crime novel and creepy scenes given lots of colour and some rather unhinged characters make for a gripping read. The author really takes the time to develop the characters, good and bad, and this creates a great chilling atmosphere, this coupled by the snowballing vindictive villagers makes a thrilling page-turner.