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What Comes Around

by Hans Koppel

A man is left stranded at a motorway service station outside Gränna. His mate has taken the car and the money and simply left him there. Now their boss is on the way to pick him up and she is not pleased. It wasn’t a lot of cash, but she still has to set an example. The rest must learn what happens if they try to rip her off.

Calle Collin is in Höganäs in the south of Sweden to do his usual kind of report – a heartbreaking portrait of someone’s loved one who passed away before their time, suitable for a family magazine.

This time the story is about a 13 year-old kid who got killed in a hit-and-run many years ago, but Calle can’t really get a grip of what to write. The mother is still grieving and seems to have an unrealistic notion of who her son really was. The brother, now a grown-up looking like an anabolic crunching torpedo, says very little at all. And the brother’s girlfriend is giving Calle the creeps. Calle starts to look elsewhere for information and realises that very little positive is to say about the deceased. Still he manages to write a tearjerking story about the boy and the mother who still misses him dearly.

At another newspaper, young star columnist Anders Malmberg sees the report and instantly recognises the tormentor from his childhood. The boy, Kent, had made his life a living hell; he was nothing at all like the angel portrayed in the magazine. Anders decides his next column should be a strong and personal one – revealing the real truth about the boy and the mendacity of magazine reporters.

Soon both Anders Malmberg and Calle Collin are in danger. Some truths should be left unspoken – and one should never speak ill of the dead.

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