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The Art of Dying - Anna Grue

Danish bookcover - The Art of Dying - a Dan Sommerdahl story by Anna Grue

Kunsten at dø
The Art of Dying
Vol. 3

Politikens Forlag, 2009
416 pages

Foreign rights sold to:
Norway / CappelenDamm, France / Gaïa
and Germany / Atrium


One day, someone breaks into the studio of the sculptor, Kamille Schwerin, smashing a full year's production of sculptures and murdering her 83-year-old mother. The police suspect that it was in fact Kamille that the killer was after and when several more attempts on her life are made and she receives a number of threatening letters, their suspicions are realised. But months pass without the culprit being apprehended.

The following year, private detective Dan Sommerdahl is to appear on the same reality TV show as Kamille Schwerin. When police superintendent Flemming Torp finds out about it, he sees a chance to solve the puzzle. But first, he has to eat humble pie and ask his old friend for help ...


“She's done it again. Keeps up the standards with her bald detective Dan Sommerdahl, who finally discards his pressed-Gant-shirt image and eases the pressure outside the home. Great to shake the ground beneath his idyllic city home before he, the dog, his red-haired doctor wife, their adolescent kids and the other furniture all are merging into one giant cliché. Of course, Anna Grue knows it's not going to last. Therefore, the main character and his personal belongings are put through a mental ringer. (...) “The Art of Dying” delivers a wonderfully and tightly composed novel, and as always, is filled with idiomatic dialogue and suspense generously sprinkled in all the right places.”
- Anette Dina Sorensen, Politiken

“Anna Grue is on good form indeed, sarcastically sharp and snappily sophisticated in the 'The Art of Dying', where she elegantly substitutes the 'whodunits' of the English manor house with a reality TV show on a deserted island. People meet in a chamber play and the death knell sounds.”
**** Bo Tao Michaëlis, Ekstra Bladet

“The victim is so unpleasant that you’re almost gloating: "Take that, you disgusting bitch '. (...) Kamille is loathed liked few others. As an artist, she’s considered boring yet her influence on the art world is enormous. As Flemming's girlfriend, an art teacher, puts it: "You’ll only find her artwork at remote hospitals and at a single town hall in Greenland ... Kamille's real masterpiece is her work on various committees and foundations and the like." Her position is unassailable and she loves to pick and choose how she uses her power - to shelve or reject grant applications, to feed the rumour mill – making a virtuoso mess.” - Katinka Bruhn, Weekendavisen

“Agatha Christie is looking down benignly upon Anna Grue. 'The Art of Dying' is in fact an elegant, updated version of Christie's classic "And Then There Were None" - now with added reality TV, humour (which old Agatha didn’t have too much of) and Dan Sommerdahl, the womanising bald detective from ' The Farther You Fall' and the excellent, ' Judas' Kiss'.”
**** Anne Sophia Hermansen, Fyens Stiftstidende

The Dan Sommerdahl Series

Anna Grue - Author of the Dan Sommerdahl Series