In Death of a Nightingale, the melancholy and triumphant third installment in the Nina Borg series by Danish duo Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis, desperation, extortion and murder push emotionally raw characters to their limits.

Nina Borg, a Red Cross nurse, has a compulsive sense of social justice that has left her haggard and estranged from her husband and children. She simply can’t say no, and she finds herself involved in an especially dangerous case concerning Natasha, an illegal Ukrainian immigrant, and her daughter Rina. Sent to jail for the attempted homicide of her fiancé, Natasha escapes custody and is concerned only with one thing: getting her little girl back. But Natasha isn’t the only one after Rina.

Natasha is the perfect example of an innocent pushed beyond her limits. After years of lies, abuse and time spent in jail, the once-naïve and compliant Natasha turns primal and ravenous in the hunt for her daughter. This time, nothing will get in her way.

As Nina becomes more invested in the case, she finds herself tangled in something much larger than she could have imagined. A bloody tale, beginning back in 1934 Stalinist Ukraine, has fatal consequences for those who unearth the secrets that were long put to rest.

Death of a Nightingale is a masterfully written mystery that seamlessly blends several stories from different time periods into one jaw-dropping standstill, giving the reader just enough time for a gasping breath before the story charges on.

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