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Cop Killer (A Martin Beck Police Mystery,…

Cop Killer (A Martin Beck Police Mystery, No. 9) (original: 1974; edição: 1978)

de Maj Sjowall

Séries: Martin Beck (9)

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8421419,053 (3.75)32
In this penultimate installment of the classic Martin Beck series, Beck is drawn into a case that turns up mysterious echoes of his past cases. Now head of the National Murder Squad, Beck is called in to a sleepy Swedish town to investigate a woman's disappearance ...
Título:Cop Killer (A Martin Beck Police Mystery, No. 9)
Autores:Maj Sjowall
Informação:Vintage (1978), Paperback, 324 pages
Coleções:Sua biblioteca

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Cop Killer de Maj Sjöwall (1974)


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Mostrando 1-5 de 14 (seguinte | mostrar todas)
Possible triggers: the first chapter reads at first like a sex murder, but there is no actual rape. (I did have to skim the first chapter very quickly, though, because it was still upsetting to read about.)

This ninth installment in the Martin Beck series tracks two cases: the disappearance and murder of a woman in her late 30s, and a shootout in which one cop dies and one criminal is on the run. Most of the book focuses on the disappearance of the woman, particularly when it is revealed that her next-door-neighbour had been previously convicted of a sex murder; the press and indeed the higher-ups in the Swedish police are clamouring for his head. Martin Beck is less convinced of the man’s guilt in this case, however.

The major police characters have had a chance to grow and develop. Martin Beck is a bit less grumpy for once in his life (although he did react most grumpily to the papers calling him “Sweden’s Maigret”), and Kollberg is considering leaving the police force because he’s disillusioned and burned out. If he leaves, that will cause a great deal of change for Martin Beck. This book calls back a fair bit to other installments in the series: I spotted references to Roseanna, The Locked Room, The Laughing Policeman, The Fire Engine That Disappeared, and Murder at the Savoy.

One theme I found amusing was how Martin Beck and his colleagues would simply work around their annoying boss, Malm, trying to tone down his excesses (seriously, the guy wanted to send a helicopter squad and riot police out to catch a single criminal?). Or calling him to say they had found the criminal, but not calling until they had a head start on catching him ahead of the riot police, etc., so that they could defuse the situation before it could even explode.

There is a fair bit of social commentary in these books, perhaps not the most elegantly woven in, but crime fiction can be a good way to highlight problems in society, especially when those problems relate to police brutality. There is also a strikingly relevant sidebar on the conditions of the healthcare system in Sweden. I would be interested to know if any of these things have changed since the 70s.

One thing that I *do* hope would change is the occasional yucky 70s attitudes from various male cops and one of the murder suspects. But actually this installment is not bad at all in that department; some of them have really obnoxious males in them.

I’d recommend this if you’ve been following the series, but you may want to at least read Roseanna first. ( )
  rabbitprincess | Apr 5, 2020 |
Martin Beck, head of the National Murder Squad, is called in to a sleepy Swedish town to investigate a woman's disappearance. When she is found already murdered, in a swamp, suspicions swirl around Folke Bengtsson, the killer Beck caught in the first novel of the series for committing a similar murder, and who has since been released. But Beck is beginning to doubt that Bengtsson is guilty of any murder at all.

This was a straightforward police procedural that focused only on the investigation and police activities. Martin Beck and his partner were just and smart police officers but there was a fair amount of commentary on police incompetence and brutality in Sweden in the 1970s. The story kept my interest throughout and I enjoyed it. ( )
  gaylebutz | May 4, 2019 |
This was a typical police procedural in the Martin Beck series. I liked how the authors brought back suspects from previous books in the series into this one. They were woven into this storyline in a well-thought out way. It was very natural and didn't seemed forced. The sudden plot turn during the story was confusing at first, but they tied it together nicely eventually. The ending was a slight let down, but it did make sense. Overall, I enjoyed the story. This series is growing on me. ( )
  jguidry | Jul 6, 2017 |
I was a bit taken aback when the book seemed to leave the main mystery about two-thirds of the way through to tackle the case of the 'cop killer' but the two cases do connect up in the end. The name is a bit misleading as the 'cop killer' case is clearly the secondary mystery; however, it does illustrate the authors' point about the police & government bureaucracy perfectly.

This 1973 Swedish book and what the authors are trying to say about relations between police & citizens struck me as strikingly relevant to 2016 U.S. In the police, in this book (and I assume in today's forces), the individual policemen vary from the lazy & incompetent to the honest & hard-working, from the bullies who revel in the power that the badge gives them to the naive foolhardiness of some rookies to the tired experienced men. What is scary to Kollberg and Beck (and to me!) is the organizational mindset of a bureaucracy which views aggressive confrontation as the natural and best response to any situation, with bigger and more weapons as an improvement. And encouraging this mindset is the journalism which is uninterested in waiting for "the truth" as long as a good headline can be found.

Into this scenario enters the 'cop killer' -- a teenaged boy who was present when another boy shoots at a couple of patrolmen after one of them begins to threaten him. The cop who dies does so as a result of a bee sting he gets when he is hiding from all the commotion in a ditch! But that doesn't factor into the police chief's decision to start a country-wide man hunt for the "Cop Killer" complete with attack dogs, tear gas and assault weapons... This sort of over-reaction is part of what leads to dead black kids in America. ( )
  leslie.98 | Mar 16, 2016 |
Although this ninth is only the penultimate volume of Maj Sjöwall’s and Per Wahlöö’s consistently excellent series of police procedurals, it feels like a summing up of what has gone before, of things coming to a head and to an end. The most obvious cause of that is probably that Cop Killer harkens back to the first two novels by bringing back the murderers featured in them (which is why it is a good to not read Cop Killer before Roseanna and The Man Who Went Up In Smoke, unless you really don’t mind spoilers). Maybe somewhat less obvious, but definitely more important is the way this novel marks the culmination of the authors’ ongoing critique of the course Swedish society has taken since the late 60’s.

Nobody who read the any of the previous volumes will be surprised that Sjöwall and Wahlöö take a very dim view of that course, and in Cop Killer there is a pervading sense that things have deteriorated to a state were they are becoming unendurable. Martin Beck spends most of the time in a small provincial town in Southern Sweden, and while that seems like an almost idyllic place compared to Stockholm or even Malmö, it does not remain untouched from the general corruption. More, there is a distinct of siege mentality, with the few good people withdrawing from society, moving to the fringes or into privacy where they try to withstand the tide of greed and stupidity sweeping over the country – I even felt reminded of the zombie apocalypse at times if only for the unrelenting fatalism with which the characters in this novel seem to accept the unavoidable victory of the power-hungry and incompetent. Everyone seems to be resigned to the fact that the country is going to the dogs and that their small acts of defiance (finding the actual killer of a woman in spite of pressure from one’s superiors, arresting a small-time criminal before the full weight of a militarized police force comes crushes on him) will be ultimately futile as the police is taken over by ruthless thugs in the lower and even more ruthless careerists in the upper ranks.

As can probably be guessed from the above, Cop Killer is a very dark and indeed bitter novel. Even so, it is also an occasionally very funny one, as Sjöwall and Wahlöö continue to give their satiric urge free rein, this time not just aiming at police bureaucracy and incompetence but also at the press and their greed for headlines. It is grim and biting humour but still serves as at least a bit of comic relief in what is otherwise a very bleak novel, that barely manages to become outright depressing by granting the protagonists that we have been following over nine volumes now at least some level of private happiness (although it has to be added that compared to earlier volumes their private lives is not given much space here). Just one novel to go now, and it will be interesting to see where Sjöwall and Wahlöö will take the final volume of the series from here.
  Larou | Apr 2, 2015 |
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» Adicionar outros autores (8 possíveis)

Nome do autorFunçãoTipo de autorObra?Status
Sjöwall, Majautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Wahlöö, Perautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Binder, Hedwig M.Tradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Bruna, DickDesigner da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Engen, BodilTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Hoekstra, FroukjeTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Ipsen, HenningTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Kulick, GreggDesigner da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Nielsen, BjarneTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Schulz, EckehardTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Teal, ThomasTradutorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Weiner, TomNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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In this penultimate installment of the classic Martin Beck series, Beck is drawn into a case that turns up mysterious echoes of his past cases. Now head of the National Murder Squad, Beck is called in to a sleepy Swedish town to investigate a woman's disappearance ...

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