Raid and the Kid, by Harri Nykanen

by Peter

Raid and the kidRaid is a mysterious figure. He is Finnish crime fiction writer Harri Nykanen’s hard-nosed, no-nonsense, ultra-effective hit man. We met this legend first in Raid and the Blackest Sheep, where he functioned as bodyguard and driver for the ageing gangster Nygren.

Now – in Raid and the Kid – Raid is lying low at the farmhouse he inherited from Nygren, far up in northern Finland. He is minding his own business, doing as close to nothing as possible, when the son of a local shopkeeper stumbles onto his property with two bloodthirsty Bolivian drug traffickers on his heels. Raid – showing a softer side of himself – comes to the boy’s aid. He swiftly deals with the two gangsters. So now he has a new enemy, one with lots of resources. Also, his action attracts unwanted attention elsewhere.

Meanwhile, in the Finnish capital of Helsinki, Detective Lieutenant Jansson and his colleagues are also dealing with the fallout of the actions of the Bolivian drug cartel. A beautiful Finnish stewardess with tons of bad connections in all directions and an affinity for the fine, white powder from Bolivia, has been found dead. So has her lover, a Bolivian warehouse worker who quite possibly has more than one job and may well be importing much more interesting goods than bananas.

So what’s up in cold Finland – as we meet it in Raid and the Kid? Why are agents of the Bolivian drug cartel running around in the wilderness in Northern Finland shooting at a kid? How come the apartment of the air stewardess is full of stolen goods? Why has she and her lover been killed? As the investigation progresses it becomes evident that a shipment of bananas that ended up at the wrong place, a shady PI, and old lovers all play important roles in the complex chain of events that has been set in motion in this hugely entertaining crime drama.

Harri Nykanen

Raid and the Kidis a great, quiet, and understated Finnish crime fiction novel by the excellent best-selling Finnish crime fiction writer Harri Nykanen. This is the real deal – evocative, authentic, and as Finnish as it gets. It is representative of a genre within a genre: Finnish crime fiction is distinctive enough to be a genre of Scandinavian crime fiction. It is humorous, somewhat suspenseful, and very interesting!

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