From the first pages of Red Wolf, I found not only the writing, but the very story itself hard to follow. A former newspaper journalist has struck out on her own as an independent investigative reporter. She focuses on terrorism and its perpetrators.
A fellow male journalist has discovered secret information about a major unsolved bombing of forty years ago. This information pertains to the bombing of a Drakan fighter plane at location F21 outside the northern town of Lulea , Sweden . For journalist Annita Bengtzon, this could be another big break into an unsolved mystery story she could then sell to newspapers.
When Annita arrives in the small northern town of Lulea, she discovers that her male informant is dead-run over by an automobile several times, crushing his skull. Sickened by this information, Annita decides not only to hunt down this man’s murderer, but to solve the terrorist bombing of forty years ago.
In spite of police reports detailing the murder scene, Annita decides to visit the snowy place on her own. There, she accidentally discovers a nervous young worker hidden in the shadows.
Convincing this fellow that she is a reporter who would never mention the young man’s name, he admits to witnessing the brutal murder. Now, more than ever, she is determined to expose those responsible for these atrocities.
Because he was sneaking home late, he had watched, unobserved, as a Volvo shot out of the darkness, knocked down the reporter, then ran him over. The killer dragged the smashed body up against a fence near the road to suggest to police that the reporters death had been a hit and run accident. Snow hid most clues.
Part of Annita’s story leaks to a newspaper. It mentions the existence of an informer. It takes little effort for the killer(s) to realize that someone from remote Lulea is the informer. In turn, this young man is found murdered-his throat slashed.
Meanwhile, Annita’s unhappy husband begins cheating on her even though they have two children. These precious youngsters get passed back and forth between distanced parents. Their father is a very task oriented man who wants nothing more than for Annita to remain at home so he can go about his life as a professional businessman. He resents his wife’s absence, because she wants the same rights to her career as he does.
As a result, both parents spend much time away from home. Although their children are left in the hands of good caregivers, Annita worries far more about them than her cheating husband.
And this is where I will leave the reader of Red Wolf to discover how, or even if, Annita Bengtzon can solve so many problems and move on with a happy personal life. She will uncover how life threatening it can be to stir up the hornet’s nest of forty years ago.
There is something terribly disjointed about RedWolf. Author Marklund uses odd descriptive phrases and clauses that impede the flow of the narrative rather than add more prosaic relevance to emotions and actions. I found myself stopping to reread words that, to me, were awkward and clumsy, sometimes trite. Examples:
___”She felt adrenaline slowly start to spread out from the small of her back, up toward her chest.
___He served humanity in a way that he knew was right, and in return he got respect and reassurance that confirmed that his frame of reference was the right one. He was a solid person.
___The taxi drivers’ voices by the entrance cascaded after her as she walked through the small airport, making her feel slightly hunted.
___The wind was damp and full of odors, soil and leaves and car fumes, the grass was still green, and half-dead leaves still clung to a few branches.
___Thomas demonstratively turned ninety degrees away from her, his shoulders screaming out that he was actively distancing himself.”
I was truly disappointed to read Red Wolf. It seems to have a little bit of every kind of problem thrown in for good measure. As a result, none of the books major issues are fully developed nor are its characters, who appear emotionless and fake. This is one disjointed book I would not recommend to any reader unless it is carefully rewritten and edited to avoid superficiality.