THE BOY IN THE SUITCASE by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis

boy in suitcaseYou all know by now that I am always downloading books ‘to be read later’.  When later comes, I often have forgotten what they are about, but I never bother to look them up again because I figure I liked the blurb enough to want to read it, so . . . I just start in reading it.

I forgot what The Boy in the Suitcase was supposed to be about, but I had this vague notion that it was some kind of gentle children’s fantasy tale along the order of Neil Gaiman.

It wasn’t.  Not by a long shot.

Scandanavian writers Kaaberbol and Friis have cooked up a jim dandy thriller.  Ohhh, yes, indeedy.

Holding the glass door open with her hip, she dragged the suitcase into the stairwell leading down to the underground parking lot.

There was no elevator.  Step by step she manhandled the heavy suitcase down to the level where she was parked, then realized that she didn’t want it in her car until she knew what was in it.  She found a relatively private spot behind some dumpsters, sheltered from security cameras and the curious gazes of passersby.  Her hands were shaking, but she managed to unbuckle the strap and unsnap the locks.

In the suitcase was a boy: naked, fair-haired, rather thin, about three years old.  The shock rocked her back on her heels…

The tale involves a desperate man, a bad man, a frantic mother, a despairing mother, a tragic woman, perplexed and tired husband … and the three-year-old boy.   A complex web ensnares them all, and it is the kind of read where you have to stop from time to time to catch your breath.

This book was translated from the Danish by Lene Kaaberbøl, and a fine translation it is, too.

Excuse me, but I need to take a look at my luggage.  You know, just in case.




2 comments on “THE BOY IN THE SUITCASE by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis

  1. Deb Atwood says:

    Whoa, Nellie. This looks intense!

  2. “jim dandy”! this review has made me very happy.

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