Discover Scandinavia’s bestselling writing sensation Jussi Adler-Olsen with his engrossing series featuring Detective Carl Mørck of Department Q, Copenhagen’s cold cases division.
Unflinchingly brutal, unapologetically dark and with a surprising twist of humour, it’s no wonder that several of the stories have already made it to the big screen.
Fans of Steig Larsson and Nordic noir will love these Scandi thrillers and you’re unlikely to find another series quite like Department Q.
Jussi Adler-Olsen’s Department Q books in order:
Film: The Keeper of Lost Causes
Copenhagen detective Carl Mørck has been taken off homicide to run a newly created department for unsolved crimes. His first case concerns politician Merete Lynggaard, who vanished five years ago. Everyone says she’s dead. Everyone says it’s a waste of time. He thinks they’re right.
But she isn’t dead… yet. Can they save her in time?
Film: The Absent One
Department Q solves the unsolvable. So when a file on the brutal murder of a brother and sister 20 years ago lands on the desk of Detective Carl Mørck he doesn’t understand why, because the killer has already been found, and the case is closed.
Why has it turned up on Carl’s desk? And who put it there?
In Copenhagen’s cold cases division, Carl Mørck has received a bottle. It holds an old and decayed message, written in blood.
It is a cry for help from two boys. Is it real? Who are they and why weren’t they reported missing? Can they possibly still be alive? Carl needs to find out, and fast…
1987: Nete Rosen thought she’d put her traumatic youth behind her. Her caring foster parents and loving husband helped her start again. But then a man from her past reappears, who threatens to destroy her new life. She won’t be drawn back into that nightmare – she won’t be a victim again.
2010: Detective Carl Mørck from Copenhagen’s cold case division is looking into the disappearance of Rita Nielsen, an escort agency owner. But as he investigates, he discovers that Rita is only one piece of the puzzle. It’s not a one-off incident, but part of a disturbing pattern that’s been hidden for over 20 years…
Over three years ago, a civil servant vanished after returning from a work trip to Africa. Presumed dead, his family still want answers. It’s up to Department Q, Denmark’s cold cases department, to find out the truth. But what Detective Carl Morck doesn’t know, is that the key to the investigation is right here in Copenhagen.
Fifteen-year-old Marco Jameson is tough, smart and very suspicious of police. Sleeping rough and hiding in the shadows is his way of life. But what does he know worth killing for – and will the police find him before whoever he is running from?
In the middle of a hard-won morning nap in the basement of police headquarters, Carl Mørck 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 seventeen-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.
In a Copenhagen park the body of an elderly woman is discovered. Though the case bears a striking resemblance to another unsolved homicide from over a decade ago, the police cannot find any connection between the two victims. Across town a group of young women are being hunted down. The attacks seem random, but could these brutal acts of violence be related? Carl Mørck of Department Q is charged with solving the mystery.
Back at headquarters, Carl and his team are under pressure to deliver results: failure to meet his superiors’ expectations will mean the end of Department Q. Solving the case, however, is not their only concern. After a breakdown, their colleague Rose is struggling to deal with the ghosts of her past – a past seemingly connected to one of the division’s most sinister case-files. It is up to Carl, Assad and Gordon to unearth the dark and violent truth plaguing Rose before it is too late.
There you have it – Jussi Adler-Olsen’s Department Q books in order! How many have you read? Let us know in the comments below!