Anna Märklin's Family Chronicles by Dorte Hummelshoj Jakobsen

This is the second book by Dorte Hummelshoj Jakobsen that I’ve read. I liked the first one The Cosy Knave, but I liked her latest book, Anna Märklin’s Family Chronicles even more. The Cosy Knave, as the title suggests, is humorous and rather quirky, whereas Anna Märklin’s Family Chronicles is a psychological mystery and not at all cosy.

Set in Denmark in the present day with flashbacks to Sweden (where her father’s family came from) during the early part of at the beginning of the twentieth century, Anna Storm finds herself with beset with problems. Her father is seriously ill and strangely secretive about his family background:

There were so many things her father did not want to talk about. Illness and death, war and accidents. Things did not change for the better because you talked about them  he claimed.

Anna longs to know more and when she finds her grandmother’s journal she is enthralled. But digging into the past can reveal secrets that you might not want to know.

At the same time she is concerned about Karin, her best friend and neighbour, whose life is under threat for reasons Karin doesn’t divulge. When Anna can’t contact Karin, either by phone or at home, she eventually uses Karin’s spare key to enter her flat and finds her lying dead on the kitchen floor. it looks as though she slipped and hit her head – but was it really an accident?

Anna Märklin’s Family Chronicles has depth both in mystery and in characterisation and the setting is superb. I was transported in time and place as I read and fearful for Anna’s safety as she dug deeper into the mysteries surrounding her. I really enjoyed this book and hope that Dorte Jakobsen will write more in this vein.

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 439 KB
  • Publisher: Candied Crime (18 Dec 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Source: my copy supplied by the author
  • My Rating: 4/5

Dorte Hummelshoj Jakobsen is a teacher from Denmark, teaching English at upper secondary level. In her spare time she reads and writes crime fiction in English and Danish, and in 2010 she sold her first flash stories to American magazines or publishers. One story appeared in Discount Noir (edited by Ste Weddle & Patricia Abbott).

Since then she has published two collections of flash fiction, “Candied Crime” (humour) and “Liquorice Twists” (a bit darker). Her bestsellers are the romantic ghost story “Heather Farm” (suspense plus romance in the Dunes near the Danish west coast) and the cosy novel “The Cosy Knave” (European title: “Murder deLight”).

For an interview with Dorte see Linda Rae Blair’s website.

5 thoughts on “Anna Märklin's Family Chronicles by Dorte Hummelshoj Jakobsen

  1. Completely new author to me, but I trust your judgement so I’m off to look for the first in the series. (I hate coming in in the middle!)


  2. Margaret – I’m so glad you liked this novel. I agree completely that it’s got depth and strong characters and I really like the sense of history too. It’s a good, good story.


  3. I wanted to read this book for review but was unable to at the time. I’m quite anxious to read it especially since it’s different than her other fiction. I think she’s a writer to watch in the future.


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