When the Devil Holds the Candle Review
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Being someone who loves a good mystery and having heard good things about Karin Fossumís books, I was excited to read her newest release When the Devil Holds the Candle, the latest in her Inspector Sejer Mystery series. But this was one of the darkest stories Iíve read in a long timeóand I didnít enjoy it at all.

The story is focused around two seemingly unconnected events in Inspector Sejerís territory. The first event is a purse snatching, and the second is a missing person. The story jumps all over the place while delivering details about the main characters, Andreas, Zipp and Irma Funder. Andreas and Zipp are 18 years old and best friends who are always looking for something to do. Andreas is a very handsome boy, while Zipp is very average. The boys find themselves bored with their town and lacking in adventure, so Andres decides that they should make an adventure. The boys drive out near the beach and spot a woman pushing a baby carriage. Andreas decides to steal the womanís purse and go have some fun with the money. While the boys are taking her purse, the woman loses her grip on the baby carriage, which tumbles down an embankment, hurting the baby. Zipp tries to stop the carriage, but heís unable to do so, so the boys take the purse and leave.

The troublemakers then end up following another older woman to her home. Andreas wants to break into her home, get more money, and have a little fun. But Zipp decides to leaveóand thatís the last time Zipp sees Andreas.

The story finally shifts to Irma Funder, an elderly lady with both health issues and mental issues. It is her home that Andreas breaks into. Inspector Sejer interviews Irma about the missing personóand he has a feeling that she knows more than she is telling.

When the Devil Holds the Candle is very confusing from the start. The author tries to build her characters by psychoanalyzing them, which for me was just plain boring. The dark side of every character in the book is revealed, but I was often unsure of which character I was supposed to be analyzing at the time. Lastly, the inner thoughts of characters are often put into words for the reader, but I was often confused by what the thoughts meant, and how they fit into the story at all. In my opinion, When the Devil Holds the Candle isnít worth the timeóor the effortóthat it takes to read. But if youíre a Karin Fossum fan, you may still want to give this one a try.

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