Still hoping this series gets better, and still assuming that part of my dislike is just from translation.
Many of the problems I had with the first book are the same for this one.
A Norwegian is murdered in Thailand, so naturally they think to ask for the new celebrity Harry Hole to go check it out (when he isn't drunk of course).
The book is definitely entertaining and keeps you guessing, even though I had a feeling I knew who the murderer was the whole time. This book was a bit more gruesome in that it included pedophilia and other sexual acts with children.
My main concern is still Harry. I dislike him even more now. I don't understand his attachment to or relationship with Runa. She's 17 and keeps showing up at his hotel and he just basically ignores her or asks her random questions about her mom. Shouldn't he be telling her it's inappropriate? He even questions whether she thinks she's in love with him but puts absolutely no effort into quelling her feelings. Even though he's not drinking while in Thailand, he still makes very questionable decisions (and even gets thrown out of a window).
As I said in my review for the last book, the ending was very confusing (in both books). I don't know if they're just so action-packed that it's hard to follow, or if something gets lost in the translation, but it's all a blur. I can't tell who was hurt, who was being chased or doing the chasing, or where anyone was. The epilogue was short and gave no more information, but it seemed like Hilde did die and they just threw that in the end for fun.
Still going to keep going with hope that the third starts to pull everything together.