Dregs: Jørn Lier Horst

Author: Jørn Lier Horst
Series: William Wisting Mystery
Publisher: Affirm Press
March 2017 (Australia)
Edition: Paperback
ISBN: 9781925475500
Translated by Anne Bruce

Publishers Summary
Chief Inspector William Wisting is an experienced policeman familiar with the dark side of human nature. He lives in challenging times for the Norwegian police force, meeting them with integrity and humanity, and a fragile belief that he can play a part in creating a better world. Dregs begins with a police report giving the place and time of the discovery of a training shoe washed up on the sand, containing a severed foot. Soon a second shoe is washed up, but it is another left foot. What is the explanation for this? Has there been some kind of terrible accident at sea? Does it indicate the killing and dismembering of two victims? Is there a link with the unsolved mystery of a number of disappearances in the Larvik area in recent months? In this gripping police procedural, Wisting gradually gets to the bottom of the mystery with the help of his all too human colleagues and his journalist daughter, Line.

I’m always excited at the prospect of finding a new crime mystery series and was happy to come across the William Wisting books by Jørn Lier Horst.
However, it was not until I had this book in my hand that I realised that this is not, in fact, the first in the series but the sixth, it is though the first to be translated from the Norwegian.
I’m not sure of the logic behind that decision but I’m happy to say that I didn’t feel too short changed, nevertheless, a brief account of the back story would have been much appreciated.

William Wisting is middle aged Police Inspector, he has an adult daughter who works as a journalist, and he has a girlfriend. He neglects his health so is not as fit as he ought to be, he has a few quirks, but not so many as to make him one of those deeply flawed police officers that we come across in some types of crime fiction.

William Wisting and his team are investigating the mystery surrounding the discovery of a second severed foot washed up on a beach, it doesn’t match the first foot so accident is ruled out. To deepen the mystery further, more severed feet get washed up.
As four people have gone missing from the area, the team must investigate the possibility of these two incidents being related. Their investigation leads them to some very unexpected places and to some very interesting characters.

This is a police procedural at its best, it is intriguing, credible, well plotted and flows beautifully and I loved the way the author meshed the parallel stories of Wisting and his daughter Line.
There’s plenty here to keep the reader turning those pages in anticipation, and if you love a good British police procedural then I highly recommend the William Wisting series.

Review copy supplied by Affirm Press

About The Author

Jørn Lier Horst (born in Bamble, Telemark 1970) is a former Senior Investigating Officer at the Norwegian police force. He made his literary debut as a crime writer in 2004 and is now considered one of the foremost Nordic crime writers. His William Wisting series of crime novels has been extremely successful, having sold more than 500,000 copies world wide. Dregs is the first book translated into English in this addictive series. The next book, Closed for Winter, won Norway’s Booksellers’ Prize in 2012 and was shortlisted for the Riverton Prize. His latest novel, The Hunting Dogs, won both the prestigious Golden Revolver, for best Norwegian crime, and The Glass Key, which widened the scope to best crime fiction in all the Nordic countries, in 2013. (source: Affirm Press)

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