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Leif G. W. Persson

Autor(a) de Between Summer's Longing and Winter's End

25+ Works 2,876 Membros 131 Críticas 10 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Photo: Suz


Obras por Leif G. W. Persson

Associated Works

The Fire Engine That Disappeared (1969) — Prefácio — 1,138 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum

Nome legal
Persson, Leif Gustav Willy
Data de nascimento
Local de nascimento
Stockholm, Zweden



Backstrom gets assigned the innocuous case of a little old lady accused of not caring for her pet rabbit. In his usual manner, he disposes of it as quickly as he can, but is frustrated by an animal rights activist in his team. Matters quickly develop, however, when a renowned criminal lawyer is found dead in his home. While the police are relieved to be rid of the deceased, Backstrom is still required to at least make a pretence of caring how he died. A tip-off from a wealthy mate soon leads Backstrom to a find that gets him very interested in this case and very anxious to ensure that it turns out well - for him.

Backstrom being Backstrom, and the constant discussion of his "super-salami" one can only quail at what he might think that the "sword of justice" is. He continues with his abominable misogyny and racism, but we start to see a bit of push-back from his colleagues, especially from his "right hand man", his lesbian second-in-command.

As with all these novels, this character is an acquired taste and probably best avoided by the easily offended. I did get the impression that Persson was toning him down a little, even make him (gasp) a bit likeable. I hope he does not make the mistake that was made in the US TV series, of trying to turn him into a loveable messed-up hero instead of the cop everybody loves to hate.
… (mais)
gjky | 8 outras críticas | Apr 9, 2023 |
Detective Superintendent Evert Backstrom is an obstreperous, corrupt, obese, racist misogynist who pisses off everybody who works with him. And those are his good points.

The second Backstrom novel is similar to the first, with Persson building a procedural around his Falstaffian cop, frequently leaving the readers shaking their heads at the outrageous internal dialogue that he attributes to him, and eliciting belly laughs that are immediately followed with a twinge of guilt at finding such outrageousness funny. It's quite a feat; he manages to keep the character just the right side of offensiveness, while milking his obnoxiousness for all it is worth.

The plot commences with the death of an old man in his apartment, surrounded by empty bottles. Backstrom instantly decides it's just one piss-artist killing another piss-artist, nothing to see here, let's all go have lunch. The body is found by a Somali paperboy, whom Backstrom dismisses with a few crude epithets.

There is something that niggles at him though and he seems to be well ahead of his colleagues, leading them a bit of a dance before the team starts to home in on what is really going on. Despite all his unlikeable characteristics, Backstrom is sharp when it counts.

This novel is a guilty pleasure, but probably not for people who consider themselves "woke"; they may just find the character too offensive.
… (mais)
gjky | 14 outras críticas | Apr 9, 2023 |
Leif Persson's Evert Backstrom is a corrupt, fat, sexist, self-regarding blowhard who rubs absolutely everybody up the wrong way. For some unknown reason, the head of the National Crime Unit decides that Backstrom is the perfect person to send to Vaxjo to investigate the murder of a trainee policewoman.

Backstrom emerges as a minor character from Persson's Story of a Crime trilogy, and takes centre stage in blizzard of very un-PC comments and general laziness and incompetence. It is clear, though, that he has an instinct for solving crimes.

Persson's habit of following up a line of dialogue with the speaker's innermost thought leads to some truly laugh-out-loud moments at Backstrom's scathing commentary. I often found myself asking "did I really just laugh at that?". This character is one of those Falstaffian creations that win you over despite their abominable behaviour.

Which makes it quite puzzling that Persson chooses to take the focus away from Backstrom in the last act. The narrative is inevitably weaker with him absent, the novel bogs down, and you really start to wonder if this story justifies its 560 page length. Give that the central character is its great strength, his extended absence really diminishes this book, and I wondered why you would do that with a character you propose to build a series around.
… (mais)
gjky | 17 outras críticas | Apr 9, 2023 |
The final instalment of Leif G.W. Persson's Story of a Crime series feels like a bit of a letdown.

Now approaching retirement as head of the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Las Martin Johansson decides to take one last crack at solving the murder of Swedish PM Olof Palme, the subject of the first book in the series, Between Summer's Longing and Winter's End.

Johannson assembles a team of detectives and instructs them to comb through twenty years of disorganised archives and identify the killer. To avoid getting noses out of joint, he does this under the cover of getting the archives collated and re-organised into a more searchable form.

Detectives Holt, Lewin and Mattei reluctantly get started on this massive task. Meanwhile the corrupt Inspector Backstrom gets wind of this and launches an extra-curricular investigation of his own, of an entirely different nature. Inevitably, these two investigations eventually converge on one figure.

My concern with this novel is that it all just seemed to easy for these investigators. What they find in a relatively short time does not seem nearly challenging enough or difficult enough to explain why a vast investigative team could not find this out over twenty years. Persson's ending needed to be more arcane and more baffling than it is. I was also not a fan of the frequent plot points that start up and then are quickly killed off, and the amount that is left unexplained after reading thousands of pages of this story. I especially found the key plot point of Waltin's university club puerile and distasteful; it didn't need to be as crass as Persson decides to make it.

I enjoyed the paranoia, bafflement and tension of Between Summer's Longing and Winter's End, and I wish now that I had left it there.
… (mais)
gjky | 13 outras críticas | Apr 9, 2023 |



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