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The Man in the Window    by K. O. Dahl order for
Man in the Window
by K. O. Dahl
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2009 (2009)
* *   Reviewed by Tim Davis

K. O. Dahl is quickly establishing himself as one of the most intriguing Scandinavian writers of crime fiction. Following up on his award-winning debut, The Fourth Man, Dahl now offers writers The Man in the Window, a complicated and slowly evolving tale of passions and revenge.

Police detectives Frolich and Gunnarstranda team up when an elderly man is murdered and his nude body is discovered on display in a storefront window. Strange markings on the body further complicate the case, and Frolich and Gunnarstranda have few clues upon which to proceed.

There are plenty of people to interview, and one or more of those may be suspects, but the Oslo detectives are careful to avoid moving too quickly. Perhaps the much younger wife (and the distraught widow) knows more than she is saying. Perhaps the dead man's brothers resented the way their older brother interfered with their business plans. Perhaps the victim's son - or his less than pleasant wife - could help solve the mystery. Perhaps a disgruntled employee - or someone else from the dead man's past - knows something that will help.

Clearly, the dead man might have had more than a few enemies, and Frolich's and Gunnarstranda's challenge is to sort out the dead man's past and avoid all the red herrings in order to find out what happened in the storefront window.

The Man in the Window is a carefully plotted mystery that slowly reveals its secrets and its surprising solution. Shadowy and cryptic, K. O. Dahl's Norwegian novel will appeal to readers who enjoy complex characterizations and deliberately paced thrillers.

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