The Department of Sensitive Crimes

The Department of Sensitive Crimes

Large Print - 2019
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"The detectives who work in Malmo Police's Department of Sensitive Crimes take their job very seriously. The lead detective, Ulf Varg, prioritizes his cases above even his dog's mental health. Then there are detectives Anna Bengsdotter, who keeps her relationship with Varg professional even as she realizes she's developing feelings for him ... or at least for his car, and Carl Holgersson, first to arrive in the morning and last to leave, who would never read his colleagues' personal correspondence--unless it could help solve a crime, of course. Finally, there's Erik Nykvist, who peppers conversations with anecdotes about fly fishing. Along with an opinionated local police officer named Blomquist, the Department of Sensitive Crimes takes on three extremely strange cases. First, the detectives investigate how and why a local business owner was stabbed ... in the back of the knee. Next, a young woman's imaginary boyfriend goes missing. And, in the final investigation, Varg must determine whether nocturnal visitations at a local spa have a supernatural element. Using his renowned wit and warmth, Alexander McCall Smith brings a unique perspective on Scandinavian crime. Equal parts hilarious and heartening, The Department of Sensitive Crimes is a tour de farce from a literary master"--
Publisher: New York :, Random House Large Print,, [2019]
Edition: First large print edition
Copyright Date: ©2019
ISBN: 9781984847386
Branch Call Number: FIC MCCAL A
Characteristics: large print., rda

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j
Jenkskitten
Jul 12, 2019

Three major mysteries to be solved by the Department of Sensitive Crimes leads the reader to an enjoyable read and crime deduction. Could have skipped the infatuation between all the main characters.

4
49Chandra19B
Jun 24, 2019

Wasn't sure when I started but ended up loving this book. AMS has the ability to create very human characters that have to make difficult ethical decisions but ultimately always make the right choices. Fun, whimisical highly readable book. If you are an AMS fan I am sure you will enjoythe department of sensative crimes.

d
dougslater
Jun 23, 2019

I was not able to connect with this story, as is often the case with his stand alone novels. Just didn't work for me.

k
KatherineHere
Jun 21, 2019

Civil servants trying to walk a narrow line in the NWO.

m
mrsmeyer618
Jun 17, 2019

I am such a big fan of AMS, that I will read anything he puts out and I will definitely be reading the next installment of Detective Varg.
Keep in mind, this is a farce, so the story line veers into silliness a time or two but the characters are absolutely lovable. The ending was just a tiny bit disappointing (as in far fetched) but the three different plot themes woven loosely together make a wonderful beach or travel read for the summer.

b
brangwinn
Jun 09, 2019

Just like comfort food, there is comfort books, and McCall Smith excels in writing them. Quirky characters who are quite real and interesting plot turns make this an enjoyable read. And like his other books, the philosophical and moral issues encountered by the characters reflect those of the readers.

s
sandraperkins
Jun 09, 2019

This book is not as good as I hoped. As this book opened, I thought I would enjoy it immensely. It is about the small group of people who work in the Department of Sensitive Crimes in a police department in Malmo, Sweden. The people are quirky but initially likeable. The idea is that the regular policemen refer their odd crimes to this group, who focus solely on that type of crime. The first crime was a market vendor who was stabbed in the back of the knee.

As I read on, I was less enamored. Most of the “sensitive crimes” turned about to be rather silly, especially the one about college age girls (women, I guess, though they behave so immaturely that “girls” is the better description) behaving absurdly and reporting each other to the police for ridiculous things.

I recently observed to a good friend and fellow reader that “all of Alexander McCall Smith’s books are the same.” Sometimes that is a good thing; I love the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency books because I love the characters, and I am interested in their lives even when the plot is less than stellar. And I mostly like the characters in the Sunday Philosophy Club series too. In those cases, I am forgiving when the story itself is not that interesting, which I must admit is sometimes the case.

But this new series uses a lot of the same techniques we have seen in other series (lots of introspection by the various characters, especially the main character; lots of focus on everyday life; a gentle, positive approach to life; an irritating character who tries the patience of the other characters, etc.). As I read this book, I could see parallels to characters in the other series. But the plot is not convincing, and I found it rather annoying.

Maybe it is because I do not already love these characters. But this new series feels too formulaic for my taste. It was hard for me to care about these characters.

This book is not horrible, but it just did not grab me the way I hoped it would. Perhaps readers who adore every book by Alexander McCall Smith will enjoy this book. If you are not already a fan, I recommend that you read the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series instead. The characters are great, and Botswana sounds like a heavenly country.

p
pokano
Jun 02, 2019

Alexander McCall Smith introduces the first in what I assume will be a new series. This one takes place in Sweden and focuses around the 3 (soon to become 4) members of the Malmo Criminal Investigation Authority's Sensitive Crime Division. The farther I read into the book, the more I enjoyed it. Looking forward to the next volume.

t
tjdickey
May 16, 2019

McCall Smith has done it again - "Scandi Blanc," one commentator aptly calls it. In place of the generic tortured psychology of the Nordic detective, and the deeply twisted criminal minds, Ulf Varg ("wolf wolf," in translation) is a kinder, gentler detective, and the pacing of the thriller is more tea break and light romantic comedy, replete with the kind of deeply human and lovable conversational meanders that drew fans into the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. Sensitive Crimes are assaults, missing persons, alleged murders, but approached with sensitivity! "These are their stories..."

m
maipenrai
May 08, 2019

I normally love all the characters in Alexander McCall Smith's novels / mysteries, but I did not quite bond with this new figure. Will try another. Kristi & Abby Tabby

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