Title: Stasi Wolf
Author: David Young
Page Count/Review Word Count: 404
Disclaimer: While I aim to be unbiased, I received a copy of this for free to review.
Stasi Wolf is the second book so far in David Young’s Karin Müller series of detective novels, and while I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as Stasi Child – the first book in the series, which I’ve also reviewed – I did still think it was a cracking little read. It’s definitely not suffering from the dreaded second book syndrome.
The interesting thing about these books is that Young is a master at evoking a sense of place and time, and while he does occasionally use German words – particularly when talking about police ranks or place names – it isn’t difficult to understand and does a great job of making you feel like you’re really there. He also captures something of the vague sense of menace that surrounded socialist Germany in the 1970s, when the book is set.
Here, Müller investigates the abduction of two children, and she finds that it has some chilling connections with the past – both with previous crimes and with her own personal life. In fact, this book gives you a much more intense look at the lives of the main characters, and Müller herself finds herself starting a new life, and a new relationship, while she’s investigating the case.
From time to time, it got difficult to understand what was happening when you were jumping backwards and forwards, and the ending itself left me a little bemused because I found it hard to remember who some of the characters were, and what they’d done throughout the book. That said, that’s not really a problem with Young’s writing – it’s a problem with my attention span, and I think I’d find it much clearer if I went back and re-read it.
Overall then, this was a decent enough read, but I would recommend reading Stasi Child first – I thought it was a better book, and also, as the first book in the series, it’s also the better introduction. Then, if you enjoy Young’s interesting twist on crime and historical fiction, you’ll know that this is the perfect book to keep you going. His writing is fantastic and his story lines hook you in and keep you entertained. I also think they could work as a television series!