Late summer. Police officer Leo Junker is awoken in the middle of the night by bright police lights flashing outside his bedroom window. His curiosity draws him downstairs to the shelter located on the ground floor of his apartment building where a young woman has been found murdered. Though on a leave of absence from the police force due to a failed mission where he fatally shot a colleague, Leo bluffs his way onto the crime scene. He examines the dead woman and sees that in her hand she is clasping a thin gold necklace – a necklace Leo recognizes.
Leo, who is struggling to control both his feelings for his ex-girlfriend Sam and his addiction to prescription drugs, sets out on a rouge investigation that quickly becomes personal as the murderer’s motives force Leo to confront ghosts from his past.
In a parallel narrative, we are told the story of Leo’s youth. He was raised in Salem, a blue-collar suburb of Stockholm, where social and racial tensions run high and children are forced to grow up fast. Leo comes to know a boy named Grim and his sister Julia, two people who will forever change his life.
In this dark tale of two childhood friends for whom life has developed along very different paths, Carlsson proves that he is skilled at depicting complex characters on both sides of the law.
The Invisible Man From Salem was named ‘Best Swedish Crime Novel of the Year’ by the Swedish Crime Writers’s Academy in 2013, and was shortlisted for the 2014 Glass Key Award for ‘Best Nordic Crime Novel’.
“Among Swedish crime writers, Christoffer Carlsson is entirely in a league of his own. And The Invisible Man From Salem is maybe his best yet.”
“An unnerving, unsettling, and intelligent crime novel.”
Dagens Nyheter (SE)
“An exceptionally strong and suspenseful novel, at times quite painful.”
“This book is addictive. The reader is drawn into the vortex of events already on the first page, and one can get out only in the end. […] This series could represent a milestone in the genre of Swedish Crime. The author who previously suceeded in doing this was Stieg Larsson, more than 10 years ago with his Millennium Series.”
WDR 2 Krimi-Tipp (DE)
“Carlsson penetrates deep into the inner workings of his protagonist and creates a haunting mood that lasts for 340 pages.”
Fokus Online (DE)
“This is no run-of-the-mill book in the category ”New Swedish Crime Series”; rather, it is an unconventional hybrid between a coming of age story and a suspense novel.”
“Nothing less than brilliant.”
Berlingske, 4/5 (DK)
“An intense and well-written crime novel from Stockholm. […] This is a realistic, harsh portrayal of criminal milieus and the police force’s hopeless struggle against crime. At the same time, it’s a story about how one’s childhood shapes the different directions a human life can take. […] In a little over 300 pages this young author has managed to build an intense and riveting drama.”
“Christoffer Carlsson is one of the most exciting Swedish crime writers in many years.”
Stavanger Aftenblad (NO)
“Without trying to compare him to the Mankell/Larsson generation, I think he’s worth the Swedish accolades that are heaped on him.”
The Times (UK)
“Intricately plotted, this is a first class urban police procedural that confronts many of the inequalities in Swedish society but steers clear from many of the snow ridden cliches of Scandinavian crime fiction.”
Love Reading (UK)
“This is a wonderfully well written novel, with a prose style that seeks to update noir.”
The Spectator (UK)