Ritta ”Helena Nurmi” Jacobsson
Crime short-stories :
Dödligt kär (Deadly in love)(LL-förlaget: Anthology: Den som gräver en grop...) (LL publishing house: Anthology: He who diggeth a pit...) 2009
Visiting Hour (In English) Anthology: Crime - The Swedish Way) 2008
Crime novel :
Exekutorn (The Executor) (pseudonym Helena Nurmi, Bonniers 2002)
Exekutorn takes place in a fictive, but highly realistic suburb to Stockholm.
”Martina has lost her home and must start her life all over. She gets a temporary employment as a housing consultant in a municipality infamous for its social and ethnic antagonism and high criminality rate. She gets brutally aware of the violence already during her first week at the job when two men young men are found murdered. By all appearances the murders have to do with a showdown in the underworld – a showdown that threathingly starts to darken Martina's own life. At the same time, in the periphery, a menacing character is dimly visible. Someone with totally different motives...”
The end of the prologue (translation by Hanna Sandgren)
“Osman went down the stairs and reached a long, narrow corridor, leading through the house, past storage rooms with wire netting.
As always it was Abbe who got the clever idea to occupy some of the storage rooms. Most of them were empty anyway. They had cleared and tidied up the rooms, changed the locks, got some blankets and mattresses. It was a good place. People rarely came there. These rooms were so often broken into that people kept their bikes, skis and sledges in their apartments or on their balconies. The few rooms that someone actually used were full of rubbish that wasn't even worth stealing.
Long before he reached their storage rooms he saw that the door to one of them was wide open. He knew that Abbe would never sleep there without locking.
His voice was raucous, but at the same time expectant.
If Abbe was there he had hardly done something to Karim. And also, he wouldn't mind talking about tonight. Osman himself didn't remember much himself. Probably not Josef either.
The storage room next to him was absolutely crammed with things.
There were shelves with paint cans, sheets of plywood, broken tires, plastic buckets, wooden boards and torn apart electronic gadgets. Maybe the door had been broken open. Maybe someone just wanted to mess with them. It could happen.
Osman stopped when he reached the half-open door to the storage room. An intense spasm went through his guts, and he felt bile coming up his throat. He quickly turned away his head and swallowed repeatedly. He had got his question answered.
Abbe was in there. What remained of him.“
Critics in the newspapers liked the Executor! This is what some of them said:
The Executor portrays real life in an almost brutal way. Helena Nurmi is able to keep the reader in anticipation from the first chapter of the book until the last. This is a book to read at a stretch and it's perfect in front of the fire on a cold winter's day when the snow is whirling outside your window.
A crime novel that holds out hope, after all.
With her book ”The Executor” Helena Nurmi joins the growing group of crime writers. And she does it very, very well. She has the courage to use her own methods and place an ordinary person in the role of the main character. It becomes unbearably tense in the last chapters, when the threads of the story are tied together to form a pretty surprising outcome.
(Gefle Dagblad 16/10 -02)
Shocking in suburbia! Don't think that Nurmi settles for a naked portrait of a suburb with a murder or two as a mumbo jumbo excuse. It isn't all about showdowns between criminal gangs and meaningless violence. Quickly one perceives a murderer with highly personal motives in this well written, thrilling and shocking book.
(Sydsvenskan 11/10 -02)
Helena Nurmi takes us to Stockholm and the rough life in one of the suburbs. ”The Executor” is about Martina, who starts to work as a housing consultant in the suburbs, and right away has to learn about the hard conditions in the underworld. But Nurmi doesn't stop there. She also asks questions about how the social environment makes youngsters commit the cruelest of crimes.
What an observation of our time and what an eye-opener!
(MåBra! 28/8 -02)