Book Review: The Tenant

THE TENANT | Katrine Engberg
(Kørner & Werner #1)
09.01.2020 | Gallery Press
Rating: 3/5 stars


When a young woman is discovered brutally murdered in her own apartment with an intricate pattern of lines carved into her face, Copenhagen police detectives Jeppe Korner and Anette Werner are assigned to the case. In short order, they establish a link between the victim, Julie Stender, and her landlady, Esther de Laurenti, who’s a bit too fond of drink and the host of raucous dinner parties with her artist friends. Esther also turns out to be a budding novelist—and when Julie turns up as a murder victim in the still-unfinished mystery she’s writing, the link between fiction and real life grows both more urgent and more dangerous. But Esther’s role in this twisted scenario is not quite as clear as it first seems. Is she the culprit or just another victim, trapped in a twisted game of vengeance? 

The Tenant is Engberg’s debut and the first book that  gives readers their introduction to Kørner and Werner, who are police detectives in Copenhagen. In typical Nordic Noir fashion, this story is a slower build filled with details about both the case and our pair of detectives. The case featured is based on an unfinished manuscript that leads to several suspects and interesting characters. I loved this cast of characters that Engberg features and the drama that fills the story between them. The plot is quite detailed, which at times left me a little confused and I felt my mind wandering, but ultimately it kept me coming back for more. Overall, I put this as a solid debut and kickoff read to a series I will be returning to for more!

🎧: I listened to this one on audio and loved the narrator. I think that listening to the book took a bit of time for me to adjust to the slower pacing and focus my wandering mind. Once I hit about a third of the way through I felt myself hit my groove.

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