Sibylla Forsenström doesn’t exist. For fifteen years, she has been excluded from society. As one of the homeless in Stockholm, she takes each day as it comes and has all her possessions in her rucksack. To find food for the day and somewhere to sleep for the night demands all her time and effort. But it does not help her in keeping the thoughts away from the past – from the questions about why her life has turned out the way it did. Then a catastrophe happens. One night, she is in the wrong place at the wrong time. A man is brutally murdered and too many circumstances lead to Sibylla as being the murderer. For fifteen years nobody has asked for her, but suddenly she is the most wanted person in Sweden. She knows how to survive, but now she has to flee…
Nominated for Allan Edgar Poe Award
Winner of Glasnyckeln 2000, Best Scandinavian
Crime Novel and Silverpocket 2002.
Nominated for Best Swedish Crime Novel 2000 and
the Poloni Award 2000.
The idea for Saknad I got one early morning in October on a
platform in a tube station. A woman in my own age, barefooted, with
a plastic bag in her hand came jostling her way through the crowd
of stressed early morning commuters, begging for money. I saw her
urge through the crowd, amongst lowered eyes and disturbed
headshakes. Still, she carried her presence with dignity. I
couldn't let go of my thoughts of that woman. I started to wonder
about how a human being can grow into such extreme loneliness, that
there was no one around to catch her when she started to loose her
grip. And I became fulfilled by a deep respect for this woman, and
for all these characters that just don't give up, instead choosing
to keep on fighting their battle.
"In Missing, Karin Alvtegen has come up with a plot that has
most of what one may want from a thriller. Action, skilful
language, plausible characters and a highly dramatic
"Alvtegen has composed this crime story with exceptional
skill. It is about relations, psychology, exclusion, braveness and
empathy. The characters and the settings feel real. The more you
read, the more you want to know. Why? How and who? I also promise
that you will be surprised... As a conclusion, I would say that if
anyone is to be called a queen of crime writing, it is Karin
"Alvtegen's novel is a first class thriller and offers
suspense and awareness to whet your appe-tite for more"
"Karin Alvtegen has written one of the best Swedish crime
novels this year"
Nordvästra Skånes Tidningar
"Missing is a gripping multi-faceted thriller. It is not only
about brutal murder, but also about something more profound - an
individual's road to awareness about her own life and value. Karin
Alvtegen delivers this brilliantly while the police hunt becomes
increasingly intensive and Sibylla's chances of escaping rapidly
decrease... Missing demonstrates that Debt was not a mere lucky
strike. Karin Alvtegen is already amongst the top Swedish crime and
"Skilfully constructed thriller!"
"Missing is a very powerful thriller. Even the most important
ingredient of a detective story - an unexpected murderer - is
present. It is a novel to be enjoyed"
"Karin Alvtegen is a skilful author, captivating the interest
of her readers when she uses brave realism to describe how Sibylla
struggles to both maintain her existence and prove her innocence of
the dreadful murders. She involves the reader in the gripping plot,
and settings as well as characters are plausible. Meeting the true
murderer becomes the exciting last turn"
"As a critic of detective and thriller novels, I read
literature of very varied quality. Much of it is moderate, some
truly bad and sometimes I get my hands on a genuine hit. Karin
Alvtegen's Missing definitely belongs in the latter category. It is
a brilliant novel that immediately attracted my interest and made
me read it almost without stopping"
"Missing is an excellent Swedish thriller with original
"In this way, Alvtegen immediately catches the reader's
interest and through her excellent, flowing language, she maintains
this interest all the way through to the end. This belongs in the
"read without stopping" category of books and shows that Alvtegen
is worthy. It is most definitely well worth reading"
"Missing is a very powerful novel. Skilfully, very intimately
and realistically, Karin Alvtegen describes an individual living
outside the margins"
"Missing is truly captivating and very easy to read. It is
undoubtedly difficult to put down. The intrigue is well thought
through and the descriptions of the settings are exceptionally well
made and authentic"
"That this novel is exceptionally well-written makes it even
more worth reading. The characters illustrate living people with