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Sacrifice is a promising debut by German author Hanna Winter It has been translated into English and is the start of a series.Psychologist Lena Peters has moved to Berlin, with her cat She has a new job, as a profiler with the police There is a sadistic and predatory killer, removing body parts from victims, at work in the city of Berlin Unfortunately Lena finds herself on the wrong side of her boss, the erratic Volker Drescher, once too often Lena get the sack When she recognises one of t Sacrifice is a promising debut by German author Hanna Winter It has been translated into English and is the start of a series.Psychologist Lena Peters has moved to Berlin, with her cat She has a new job, as a profiler with the police There is a sadistic and predatory killer, removing body parts from victims, at work in the city of Berlin Unfortunately Lena finds herself on the wrong side of her boss, the erratic Volker Drescher, once too often Lena get the sack When she recognises one of the victims as an old school friend, it all starts to get personal She is determined to capture the killer She teams up with a retired detective, Belling, after an accidental meeting Can she identify the killer Has the killer already targeted her Is she safe in Berlin This feels very much like the start of a series, like an author finding her feet and setting characters in place We meet Lena and get to see how she thinks She is almost what you would expect slightly damaged, single and bad at relationships, with a complicated family history Lena loves her cat though, which redeems her slightly in my eyes It is only when she teams up with Wulf Belling, the ex police officer and her computer nerd neighbour Lukas, she starts to come into her own She is hunting a killer I feel like we have only just touched the surface with Lena and her capabilities.Now I love a good serial killer I really do This killer is at his most interesting, when we see him stalking his prey and incapacitating them Nice touch Not a man, I would hope to encounter on a dark night I would have liked to have knownabout the killer to feeloutrage,disgust, justeverything I wanted his thoughts and his inner dark world I ended up slightly distanced from him, hoping that he would shock me.It will be interesting to see where this series goes Lena shows great deal of potential as a character and I love the setting of Berlin I was drawn to her and her side kick This is definitely worth a read, if you are in the mood for a serial killer thriller This is the first in a series from German author Hanna Winter and translated into English.The book opens in Berlin with Lena Peters our protagonist feeling as if she is being chased We hear how she briefly considers calling the police but then decides to deal with the situation herself, just as she had always done From these scant details, it is clear Lena is a woman who thinks nothing of putting herself at risk, of facing danger and obviously feels strong and capable enough to defend h This is the first in a series from German author Hanna Winter and translated into English.The book opens in Berlin with Lena Peters our protagonist feeling as if she is being chased We hear how she briefly considers calling the police but then decides to deal with the situation herself, just as she had always done From these scant details, it is clear Lena is a woman who thinks nothing of putting herself at risk, of facing danger and obviously feels strong and capable enough to defend herself The phrase just as she had always done suggests there is possibly a dark, hidden past to Lena which is compounded by the way a few drops of blood evoke a memory of the day when her parents had been burned to death in a car crash while herself and her twin sister Tamara were crushed in the back seat All the time the fire fighters were trying to free Lena, she clung to her mother s bloodied hand.refusing to let go.not even as the flames burst up around her mother So Winter sets the scene with our main character a criminal profiler, a single woman who has moved to a new flat, new area and a new job investigating a series of murders Lena is clearly talented She has an impressive academic background.outstanding marks in psychology and criminology but also excellent research into criminal profiling However, there is an implication that Peters is damaged as there are certain people that think this series of murders might be too much for you to handle, as well as Lena s own thoughts that she has her own strategies for solving the situation Therefore the reader is comfortably prepared for a story in which the mystery behind the protagonist will be as intriguing as the mystery they are trying to solve As the story progresses, Lena frequently has a feeling that she is being lied to or not being informed by the police of everything that is relevant to the case This encourages empathy from the reader and a desire for her to succeed.Peters pairs up with retired Police Officer Belling It is an unlikely partnership but one that works well and gives Winter a chance to add a littlecomplexity to the plot as they both have backstories and interesting personal situations.The murders are gritty and graphic, sadistic and perverted The Mutilator , as he comes to be called, uses drugs to inflict temporary paralysis of the muscular system so the victims cannot scream but can still feel pain His anonymous voice which narrates some of the chapters suggests this is a man deluded and ultimately being controlled by someone else or trying to impress someone else He appears to be someone outwardly conventional who will behave in an inconspicuous manner which means he may be harder to catch Lena s profiling is astute and Winter describes her exceptional observational skills which rival Sherlock Holmes.As Winter clearly plansbooks in this series, we are only given some details about Lena s past and her relationship with her twin sister I actually found this part of the book really interesting and would love to readabout their history I think it would make a good novel in itself The chapters are exceptionally short giving the book pace The last line is a complete cliff hanger obviously paving the way for part two but it really is a killer ending The language is clear, simple, blunt and makes for a very easy read I don t know how much of this is down to the translation from the original or whether it is a fair reflection of Winter s prose, but it is very accessible and straightforward For me personally, I didn t feel Berlin had quite the appeal of some of the Nordic Noir novels but the book doesn t really focus much on the setting or location and Berlin didn t feel like a character in the book In fact, I felt that when the story moves to Edinburgh, there was muchphysical sense of place.As this is an honest review I feel I need to say that although I found the ending exciting and I did like Lena as a character, I would have liked to see a bitcharacter development and a little bitabout her back story However, I am certain this is to come in the subsequent novels and Sacrifice is a mere teaser of what is still to come Occasionally the prose was a little stilted and cliched which again, could be due to translation, but I m sure that this will also becomepolished with the next novel Winter evidently understands the necessary ingredients for a captivating crime thriller and can employ them effectively I m positive that she is a writer to watch out for.Winter definitely has enough here to develop a series I don t think this is the last we ve seen of Lena Peters and I for one will be keeping an eye on her career as a criminal profiler.My thanks to Bonnier Publishing for providing me with a ARC via NetGalley in return for an honest and fair review I had to DNF this one at 20% It will appeal to fans of serial killer novels but I found the writing too simplistic possibly some depth to characters and plot was lost in translation but thats not something I can quantify and the story a little too cliche Women stalked and killed tick Police investigators with issues tick which is actually fine if you connect with the characters or the story, I still love books like this, just not this one A reader story lack of sparkle. Not bad but a bit formulaic. This was good, it was a little slow at the beginning The twists and turns were great I enjoyed the friendship formed in this book and I m exited to readof Lena Peters in the future. If you like plenty of gore and blood this is for you I did not enjoy this book too graphic with severed body parts just horrid I received this book through NetGalley and Bonnier Publishing in exchange for an honest review I officially feel bad for giving this book three stars when I m the only one that s reviewed its English version I don t speak German, I know very little about Germany aside from, you know, the racism my Muslim and Arab extended family has received within it , so I can t speak for the authenticity or the translation of German word to English sentiment I do know that my general assessment of the I received this book through NetGalley and Bonnier Publishing in exchange for an honest review I officially feel bad for giving this book three stars when I m the only one that s reviewed its English version I don t speak German, I know very little about Germany aside from, you know, the racism my Muslim and Arab extended family has received within it , so I can t speak for the authenticity or the translation of German word to English sentiment I do know that my general assessment of the book 3 5 stars lines up with its German counterpart, Opfertod This book suffers from, well, a lack of substance The characters were dry, the action mechanical, and I couldn t even get myself interested in the killer which is a problem for a thriller that explicitly shows the killer s narrative As a reader, I was lead in so many different directions Lena s sister, Belling, that cop guy whose name I forgot that I really just got lost and just let myself go along with the ride without getting too invested into the characters There s also a weird theme of misogyny in the book which has to be internalized on Winter s part, because it s so subtle that it made me squirm No female character other than Lena is portrayed in a positive light and even Lena is only good because she straditionally masculine whatever the hell that means You get tired of hearing about the woman view spoiler sleeping with the head officer hide spoiler and feeling threatened by Lena because, in the end, the entire plot is stalled because of a manufactured jealousy plot that could ve been subtracted without losing anything of value I also didn t highlight it in my book, but I do faintly recall some weird racism and xenophobia in the book Mainly with the view spoiler women who were killed they tended to be stereotypical in relation to their country of origin hide spoiler It got really hammy and cheesy with lines about chess, and I still don t buy into the fact that view spoiler Lena switched places with her twin sister in jail That s literally impossible anywhere you go the police would ve had her sister in custody and wouldn t have just turned their backs while they made the switch er oo The whole subplot seemed too extra and thrown in at the very end for me to give a single shit about it hide spoiler &Free E-pub ↯ Opfertod ↡ Er muss sie t tenAlleZusehen, wie ihre Augen brechenSie zerst ren Gleich bei ihrem ersten Fall ger t Kriminalpsychologin Lena Peters an einen Killer, der eine t dliche Mission verfolgt Eine Mission, in der Lena eine entscheidende Rolle spielt Doch davon ahnt sie nichts Lena wei , wie M rder ticken, was Obsession ist Denn sie hat ihre eigenen Abgr nde Und dennoch sitzt sie bald in der Falle Ich kann bei diesem Roman weder behaupten, dass mir die Spannung gefehlt h tte, noch, dass sie wirklich da war Insgesamt ist es einfach bei mir eher so gewesen, dass ich den Roman irgendwie interessant genug fand, weiterlesen zu wollen, aber auch nicht wirklich spannend Genau sagen, woran das lag, dass bei mir keine wirkliche Spannung aufkommen wollte, kann ich aber auch nicht.Der Fall war auf jeden Fall vom Grundsatz her spannend und interessant und vielleicht hat bei mir nicht so recht Spann Ich kann bei diesem Roman weder behaupten, dass mir die Spannung gefehlt h tte, noch, dass sie wirklich da war Insgesamt ist es einfach bei mir eher so gewesen, dass ich den Roman irgendwie interessant genug fand, weiterlesen zu wollen, aber auch nicht wirklich spannend Genau sagen, woran das lag, dass bei mir keine wirkliche Spannung aufkommen wollte, kann ich aber auch nicht.Der Fall war auf jeden Fall vom Grundsatz her spannend und interessant und vielleicht hat bei mir nicht so recht Spannung aufkommen wollen, da ich sowohl den Kommissar nicht wirklich verstanden habe, von allen seinen Handlungen und Gedanken her, als auch Lena irgendwie nicht so wirklich in die Ermittlungen eingebunden wurde Ich hatte die ganze Zeit das Gef hl Lena w re nur eine Einzelk mpferin und auch die Polizei w rde sie eigentlich nicht haben wollen Das f hrte daher dazu, dass die Geschichte nicht wirklich zusammenwachsen konnte Sehr viel war einfach in Einzelteile zerst ckelt, manche Bez ge waren nicht wirklich vorhanden und eigentlich wirkte es fast, wie zwei unterschiedliche Erz hlungen, die nebeneinander laufen und durch gro en Zufall irgendwann ein Treffen veranstaltet haben, das aber fast schon ein bisschen unglaubw rdig wirkte.Manche Dinge waren dann zudem im Verlauf der Geschichte einfach zu leicht zu durchschauen und andere, manchmal noch relevantere, konnte ich teilweise selbst nach der Aufl sung nur schwer verstehen, da sie zwar irgendwie noch logisch erkl rt wurden, aber es in der ganzen Geschichte keinerlei Hinweis in eine solche Richtung gab und es dann einfach wie aus den Wolken gegriffen wirkte Ganz besonders die Aufl sung des Ganzen fiel in dieses Vorgehen, was mich an dem Roman mit am meisten gest rt hat, wirkte das Ende einfach extrem weit hergeholt.Zudem konnte mir Lena noch nicht so recht nah kommen, da ihre Pers nlichkeit irgendwie ein wenig abwesen bis unvollst ndig wirkte und ich hoffe irgendwie, dass diese in den Folgeb nden noch ausgebaut wird und Lena einen tiefer gehenden Charakter bekommt, sowie auch die F lle mehr Sinnzusammenhang bekommen, denn ansonsten w ren die weiteren geplanten Teile nichts f r mich.Insgesamt zwar ein Thriller, den man gut lesen kann, bei dem mir aber manches gefehlt hat und daher auch kein wirklich erinnerungsw rdiges Buch A very promising crime debut This is the first novel about Lena Peters a young criminal psychologist who has been asked to help profile and catch a serial killer in Berlin His modus operandi is to mutilate each victim by removing a particular part of her anatomy, lips, nose, eyes, but even worse he uses a chemical on his victims which means they cannot move but are able to feel the excruciating pain.Lena herself is a complicated character, she is revolted by the sight and smell of blood and we A very promising crime debut This is the first novel about Lena Peters a young criminal psychologist who has been asked to help profile and catch a serial killer in Berlin His modus operandi is to mutilate each victim by removing a particular part of her anatomy, lips, nose, eyes, but even worse he uses a chemical on his victims which means they cannot move but are able to feel the excruciating pain.Lena herself is a complicated character, she is revolted by the sight and smell of blood and we subsequently discover that her parents had burnt to death in a car crash with Lena and her twin sister Tamara crushed in the back seat.Tamara is one of the characters that reoccur throughout the book, she has completely gone off the rails taking drugs and also has an 8 year old daughter who seems to be conveniently looked after by friends when Tamara turns up on Lena s doorstep with a baby boy One of the other main characters is Wulf Belling, a police officer who has been pushed into early retirement, he has his own family problems but is desperate to return to his job and helps Lena with the search for the murderer The previous psychologist working on the case, Cornelia Dobelli, has mysteriously disappeared together with her files and Lena suspects this has something to do with her current employer Volker Drescher.The book moves at a smart pace, short chapters written from various character viewpoints including the murderer which is interesting as it gives some insight into why he is doing these crimes However I always had the feeling that the author was holding some information back on all the characters and all the background stories and this becomes obvious at the end when although this murder is solved there is an obvious follow up to come when Lena receives a particular gift.I will definitely be looking out for the next book in this series and hope it will providebackground surrounding the main characters I feel the author has a lotto tell us and I for one would like to read it Dexter Breakaway Reviewers received a copy of the book to review