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Summary

In the middle of a hard-won morning nap in the basement of police headquarters, Carl Mørck, head of Department Q, receives a call from a colleague working on the Danish island of Bornholm.

Carl is dismissive at first, but then he receives some shocking news. Carl then has no choice but to lead Department Q into the tragic cold case of a vivacious 17-year-old girl who vanished from school, only to be found dead hanging high up in a tree.

The investigation will take them from the remote island of Bornholm to a hidden cult, where Carl and his assistants must stop a string of new murders by a skilled manipulator who refuses to let anything - or anyone - get in the way.

©2016 Jussi Adler-Olsen (P)2015 Penguin Audio

What listeners say about The Hanging Girl

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Narrator???

I love the department Q books but for me, this book was seriously let down by the choice of narrator. Don't know why Jussi has gone with a different narrator from the previous books but not a good choice. I won't be listening to any future department Q books if Graeme Malcolm is going to be the narrator. Bring back Steven Pacey.

127 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Bring back Steven Pacey as the narrator!

I just couldn't listen to this narrator. So I didn't listen beyond chapter 6. Such a shame as I was so excited to listen to the next Dept Q book 😕

79 people found this helpful

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WHY O WHY CHANGE NARRATOR!

I have absolutely loved every Dept Q book, the characters were brought alive by Steven Pacey and I was genuinely so excited to see another in the series. I was a little perturbed that the narrator was different but with open mind gave it a go...

Why..... Just why did anyone listen to this guy and think Ahhh he'll follow nicely in Steven Paceys footsteps?????

Im struggling to get past chapter 7 - there's no life to the narration, an awful sing song voice with inflections at the end of words and sentences that shouldn't be there... No distinct characters, Karl and Rose just blend into the background and my favourite Assad has no enthusiasm no wit no comedy value anymore...

Ruined absolutely ruined by the narrator (who sounds better suited to children's books) GUTTED!!!

72 people found this helpful

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Imperfect Chemistry

As a long-standing fan of Olsen’s excellent Department Q series I was delighted to find another one had been released on Audible. While this one is still very good quality crime fiction there have been some changes of direction which have changed the experience significantly from the earlier books. Previously Olsen did a fabulous job of mixing the back stories of his characters with a gripping crime story leading to a delicious mix of dark humour and tension-building drama. In this volume Olsen has almost pruned much of the wider character interaction out and trimmed the cast with previously significant characters like his gay lodgers almost removed from the stories. While there are still plenty of Assadisms the characters seem much steadier, less stressed and in turn, sorry to say it just a touch duller.

With this story Olsen has taken just a touch more of the Dan Brown style as the investigators get involved with a Sun God Cult. The story itself has a lot of depth, some intriguing developments and an excellent twist at the end which is tied into a very dramatic and indeed satisfying conclusion. That said, I don’t think it builds the tension in the same way as most of the previous stories. It does deliver as a crime story should, just in a more steady fashion.

Finally though, the change in narrator. It may be that with his change of character and story direction Olsen or his publishers felt a new narrator was in order. To me this just magnified what was missing. Pacey and Department Q were an excellent combination, he was able to deliver the stress, tension, chaos and humour of the earlier books with aplomb and genuinely added to the production mix. Graeme Malcolm operates at pretty much one pace and one tone. I can imagine him doing some books quite well but following on from Pacey his style jars and his delivery drags the whole experience down.

In all this is a quality piece of crime fiction with enough clever nuances, twists and turns to make it a worthwhile purchase. It also gives us a character cliffhanger to entice us into the next book of the series. However, in comparison with previous books in the series it falls down in ways that are significant and simply doesn’t fully deliver what we’ve come to expect from Department Q. For me personally this instalment has moved the series from “Must Buy” to “Worth considering”, especially if they persevere with the same narrator.

67 people found this helpful

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Why the change of narrator!!

I discovered the Department Q books quite early on in my Audible experience and they've been a kind of baseline of excellence. Great stories, interesting characters and a narrator that really enhanced the experience. Why then, was the narrator changed at this stage in the series! I tried really hard to be open minded about Graeme Malcolm performance but it really spoiled the book for me. His voice has a really strange way of ending sentences that really jarred with me.
Such a shame, because it's another very good story with lots of twists and turns.

60 people found this helpful

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Very disappointed

What would have made The Hanging Girl better?

Steven Pacey

Has The Hanging Girl put you off other books in this genre?

No but dept Q will not be the same unless Steven Pacey returns

Who might you have cast as narrator instead of Graeme Malcolm?

Steven Pacey

Any additional comments?

I returned this title purely due to the narrator. I found the change of narrator distracting and found the story extremely difficult to follow. I normally persevere with a book but not in this case. I wish I'd read the previous reviews before buying.

52 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Bring back Steven Pacey

Would you try another book written by Jussi Adler-Olsen or narrated by Graeme Malcolm?

yes to former no to latter

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

gave up halfway as could not enjoy the narrator

What didn’t you like about Graeme Malcolm’s performance?

Very poor delineation of the characters and their voices which is the point of audio. No attempt to sustain the accents which came and went. Rose in the end was almost like a man character.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

not sure

Any additional comments?

LOved the other books to date and was waiting for this next one. Should have looked at narrator which I didn't , assuming they would keep Pacey. What a shame.

47 people found this helpful

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Thanks Audible - I think not

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Err mebbe like using the same narrator as used for the first four novels.

What did you like best about this story?

Couldn't listen to it

What didn’t you like about Graeme Malcolm’s performance?

Well I'll give you a clue - EVERYTHING

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Hanging Girl?

I would have added one - it is set in the offices of the cretins who produced this audiobook.

A lot of smug and manifestly arrogant but otherwise barely human managers sit around a table (please note these are the sort that couldn't even get a jobs as local authority, NHS, or civil service management - so I think we can begin to visualise their capabilities).

"Who shall we use to narrate this?" dribbles one. "oh it doesn't matter they're only the public they exist to give us money" witters another.

"But surely there's already been four previous books all using the same narrator, won't they complain" adds a new chap to the committee. "For heavens sake will you grow up, we just do it as cheap as possible and get it out there, they'll send us their money"

Any additional comments?

Well I aint and if you do the rest of you are fools.

43 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Bring back Steven Pacey

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Steven Pacey narrating it, then the continuity and animation of the characters would have been kept.

Would you ever listen to anything by Jussi Adler-Olsen again?

Yes, I've really enjoyed his other books I've listened to.

Would you be willing to try another one of Graeme Malcolm’s performances?

Graeme Malcolm has narrated several 4/5 star rated books, therefore he must have some talent for the job. So maybe!

Any additional comments?

I was so looking forward to listening to another Dept Q book by Jussi Alder-Olsen, but Graeme Malcolm ruined it for me. I found Carl, Assad and Rose a bit boring.

30 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Women freely believe that which they desire.


The investigation of of a cold case is instigated to by unusual circumstances, and Carl is forced to into action by Rose and Assad, the usual sarcastic complaints ensue from Carl but in the end he follows the clues to a startling conclusion, that was as twisted as a pit of snakes.

As usual the new characters are multidimensional and interesting, some time answering questions unexpectedly or acting irrationally like people do.

My only complaint is that Assad is constantly making references to camels and the stupid linguistic mistakes he makes, both this things are used as humor but they diminish the realism of a character that is interesting and certainly intelligent, I just can not see this discrepancy as useful to the story, especially when this character has a very serious side, that we are beginning to discover as the series progresses.

Interesting subjects that expand understanding and also point to the business of alternative beliefs and cults of personality. With a very satisfying ending to a complex thrilling story.

The change of the reader is lamentable because it destroys continuity and disturbs the personalities as they were presented by Steven Pacey. There is nothing wrong with Graeme Malcolm but he is a different actor playing a character we had grown accustomed to have a different inflections.

28 people found this helpful

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  • Nicole
  • 13-04-17

Enjoyable

What did you love best about The Hanging Girl?

The characters within department Q

What three words best describe Graeme Malcolm’s voice?

He got the characters a little better by the second part

Any additional comments?

Stephen Pacey really nailed the characters and their voices and gave them such a good sense of humour in previous books, which was lost on the new narrator. Story was good but the ending hurried slightly exaggerated to make it work. Nonetheless I really enjoy the book I love the team their antics and the extended friends/family their stories jolly clever writing

2 people found this helpful

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  • Colleen
  • 28-12-15

What's the big deal

I don't understand this fuss about the change in narrator. I'm a big fan of the series (i purchased every title so far) and thought that Graeme Malcolm did a good job. Admittedly I was a little hesitant as i enjoyed Steven Pacey so much, but the story was so good that I didn't miss him after the first chapter. I really don't care who the narrator is there is no way I'd miss a single installment of this fantastic series!

2 people found this helpful