Monday, April 01, 2013


Author:  James Thompson
Genre:  Thriller, Inspector Vaara Series #4
Published:  2013
Personal Rating:  4/5 (very good)
Format:  Book
Yearly Count:  24

From the Publisher:

HELSINKI BLOOD opens with our favorite detective, Kari Vaara, recovering from the physical and emotional toll of solving the Lisbet Söderlund case when he’s approached with a plea.  An Estonian woman begs him to find her daughter, Loviise, a young woman with Down syndrome who was promised work and a better life in Finland . . . and has since disappeared.

One more missing girl is a drop in the barrel for a police department that is understaffed and overburdened, but for Kari, the case is personal: it’s a chance for redemption, to help the victims his failed black-ops unit was intended to save, and to prove to his estranged wife, Kate, that he’s still the man he once was. His search will lead him from the glittering world of Helsinki’s high-class clubs to the darkest circles of Finland’s underground trade in trafficked women . . . and straight into the path of Loviise’s captors, who may be some of the most untouchable people in the country.

As Kari works his new case, a past one comes back to haunt him when powerful enemies return to settle unfinished business. In a dangerous game of cat-and-mouse, he is propelled toward a reckoning in which the stakes are life or death . . . and only the victors will be left standing.

Hooray!   Thompson redeemed himself!   After the last book, Helsinki White, I didn't know if I was going to be able to read anymore in this series.  Don't get me wrong, this was still filled with brutal behavior and foul language, but Kari and his wife had different attitudes this time around due to the circumstances of the last book.  That made an incredible difference.  I was engaged and rooting for them.  I hope the series continues in that vein.

While I really enjoy Thompson's writing style, I still don't care for the mobster mentality and so much government talk.  Those types of plots aren't for me, but I'm so happy that there was a shift from the last book.  I look forward to what happens in #5!


My thanks go to Putnam and LibraryThing for sending me the ARC.


  1. Sounds like a winner to me!

    1. Bermudaonion ~ I was so happy it took a turn for the better! :)

  2. I felt the same way about the previous novel and look forward to reading this one!

    1. Book Dilettante ~ Wasn't #3 just horrible! The hate was palpable. UGH! I hope this one saves the series for you, too. :) Like I said, though, evil still lurks, but there's hope.

  3. Anonymous10:12 AM

    It has taken me 41 years but I finally realized that no matter how hard I try I just can't seem to like mob stories. My husband does so for his birthday we went to a mobster theater dinner over the weekend. Just another reminder I am turned off by those goons :)

    1. Stacybuckeye ~ LOL I think I would enjoy a dinner theater experience more than reading a book.


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