Frozen Tracks is another wonderful psychological police procedural from Ake Edwardson. Here Detective Chief Inspector Erik Winter and his team is engaged in a tough case where four college-aged men are brutally attacked from behind, leaving them with severe head trauma. The victims seem totally unconnected in their day-to-day lives and acquaintances, but the attacks continue in spite of a careful investigation into the incidents. The men are only linked by the distinctive mark left by the attacker’s mysterious weapon.
At the same time, nursery school children report being lured to the car of a strange “mister”, who gives them candy. However, the children appear unharmed, and the police brush off these incidents until one boy is found badly beaten in the woods. Winter in particular is alarmed by the danger as his daughter Elsa attends one of the hopelessly understaffed schools hit by this predator. And soon Erik Winter is thrown into a race to save a kidnapped boy from the clutches of a monster.
Thus the approaching Christmas is not very festive for Detective Chief Inspector Erik Winter. Instead of preparing for Christmas in Frozen Tracks – he had a plan for a holiday in the Costa del Sol with his partner Angela and daughter – he is haunted by two very puzzling and seemingly unrelated sets of crimes.
Leads followed by Winter and his colleagues and interviews with a farm raised victim, lead Winter and his team to the bleak and desolate prairies of rural Sweden when a branding iron is considered as being the assault weapon. Something sinister has happened out there, Winter can feel it in his bones.
Erik Winter is an interesting addition to the famous policemen we know and love – Martin Beck, Kurt Wallander, Inspector Konrad Sejer, Adam Dalgliesh, Inspector Morse, and others. He is very smart, makes decisions well grounded in intelligence and common sense, and he is a little bit of snob with a well developed taste for fine suits and expensive brands. Also, he is socially conscious without being depressed or borderline depressed. And the author, Ake Edwardson writes very well. Especially he is strong in characterization, so his characters are well developed and real.
Frozen Tracks is a good, enjoyable, exciting and very readable book!