Today I am reviewing The Marco Effect by Jussi Adler-Olsen. Thank you to NetGalley for providing with me with an eGalley in return for my honest review.
About the book (from the publisher): All fifteen-year-old Marco Jameson wants is to become a Danish citizen and go to school like a normal teenager. But his uncle Zola rules his former gypsy clan with an iron fist. Revered as a god and feared as a devil, Zola forces the children of the clan to beg and steal for his personal gain. When Marco discovers a dead body – proving the true extent of Zola’s criminal activities – he goes on the run. But his family members aren’t the only ones who’ll go to any lengths to keep Marco silent…forever.
Meanwhile, the last thing Detective Carl Mørck needs is for his assistants, Assad and Rose, to pick up a missing persons case on a whim: Carl’s nemesis is his new boss, and he’s saddled Department Q with a new addition. But when they learn that a mysterious teen named Marco may have as much insight into the case as he has fear of the police, Carl is determined to solve the mystery and save the boy. Carl’s actions propel the trio into a case that extends from Denmark to Africa, from embezzlers to child-soldiers, from seemingly petty crime rings to the very darkest of cover-ups.
My review: I discovered this author earlier this year. I can’t remember just how I found out about him, but I read one of the mysteries in the Department Q series and promptly read all of them. They are that good. This is the newest novel in this series, just published yesterday.
Adler-Olsen is a wonderful writer and a master at creating a plot that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Once again, I couldn’t figure out just how everything was going to be resolved until the end. What I love about Adler-Olsen’s series is the humor that is an integral part of each and every book. The story is serious stuff, of course, with murders and missing persons and a race to find the bad guys. But Carl Mørck is world-weary, a tad cynical, often bemused by the people around him and his dry observations make me laugh. He also, underneath all that, has a heart of gold. Assad, his assistant, has a mysterious background that Mørck is constantly trying to figure out. Rose is feisty, unpredictable and has an ever-changing gallery of looks, the most frequent being that of a punk rocker. Their personalities are vividly depicted by Adler-Olsen, and each new book in the series reveals more about them.
In this novel, Adler-Olsen has created a wonderful character in Marco. He is richly drawn and so fully fleshed-out that I found myself wanting to rescue him and adopt him. The plot is complex. Seemingly unconnected events are woven together to create an intricate web that extends far and wide. And we find out they are indeed connected. Adler-Olsen is able to juggle all of that skillfully, tying all loose ends together at the end in a way that makes absolute sense.
I couldn’t put it down.
I think you’ll love this book and this series. I do and I eagerly await the next Department Q novel.
About the author: Jussi Adler-Olsen is Denmark’s #1 crime writer and a New York Times bestseller. His books have sold more than fifteen million copies around the world. His many prestigious Nordic crime-writing awards include the Glass Key Award, also won by Henning Mankel, Jo Nesbø, Steig Larsson, and Peter Høeg.
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