Roslund & Hellström

Three Seconds

Release date: May 20, 2009 / Original title: Tre Sekunder
Roslund & Hellström - Three Seconds

Three Seconds

He leads a double life. One with a beloved wife and two small boys, a family he will protect no matter what the cost. And another, secret life in which he every single day risks losing everything

He is forced to seize control of one of Sweden’s maximum security prisons, from the inside. It’s an operation assigned by the police force. And by the Polish mafia. He realizes he is on his own, can trust no one, and that from the moment his double play is revealed he will become a huge liability for police and mafia alike. He calls himself Paula and he knows he could be dead in just three seconds.

Three Seconds is an intensely suspenseful thriller where people in all positions of society are put to the test. This is Roslund & Hellströms fifth novel starring Police Superintendent Ewert Grens. Roslund & Hellström’s previous novels have won several awards and great critical acclaim , and reached a large audience. Their books have been translated into seventeen languages and are currently being adapted for the screen.

“A thrill-a-minute cat-and-mouse game”
New York Times (US)
“[Three Seconds is] a nail biter of a book.”
New York Times, Janet Maslin (US)
“[A] sprawling and often gripping thriller ... The gritty details of drug dealing, of prison life and of the relations between cops and informants are all rendered with convincing authority in Three Seconds. And in Ewert Grens ...the authors have created an eccentric, alienated, socially inept hero worthy of comparison with Swedish mystery master Henning Mankell’s Inspector Kurt Wallander.”
Wall Street Journal (US)
“Ex-con Piet Hoffmann, who for the past nine years has led a double life as a family man and a police snitch infiltrating the Stockholm drug world, takes on his most dangerous assignment yet in Roslund & Hellstrom’s thrilling follow-up to Box 21 … The authors ratchet the suspense beautifully right up to the final, inevitable confrontation.”
Publishers Weekly (US)
“Three Seconds’ Full of Twists and Turns. There is corruption at every turn in Three Seconds, from the police officers who are supposed to be taking care of the informants to the politicians who pull the strings. Roslund and Hellstrom are dissecting the process, and they do so very well in this highly entertaining novel that is full of twists and turns … the action quickly draws you in and continues to grip you to the final chapters of the novel. The authors have something to say, and Three Seconds proves to be an excellent way of doing it.”
The Associated Press (US)
“The writing team of Roslund and Hellström is one that is made in heaven ... Three Seconds is challenging, exciting and haunting. Even if you see the (multiple) ending(s) coming, you will be amazed by how Roslund and Hellström pull things off. It is more than worth the night of sleep you’ll sacrifice at its altar. Strongly recommended.”
The Book Reporter (US)
“A terrific, nail-biting climax that demonstrates why it won the prize for Sweden’s best crime novel in 2009. Give this to Stieg Larsson fans and any reader fond of morally complex thrillers.”
Library Journal (US)
“The thin line that separates such truth and lies is a theme reverberating throughout Three Seconds and drives an explosive plot twist and coverup… [The] novel’s savage dissection of societal and government corruption make Three Seconds a nerve-jangling ride and perhaps a kissing cousin of Larsson’s novels.”
Los Angeles Times (US)
“The five novels featuring Inspector Ewert Grens are faster paced and stronger on plot than most Swedish crime fiction.”
Los Angeles Times, John-Henri Holmberg (US)
“[Roslund and Hellstrom] have concocted a brilliant thriller … extremely difficult to put down. /.../ Three Seconds puts Roslund and Hellstrom in the company of Henning Mankell and Stieg Larsson. Crime fiction rarely gets as good as this.” *Starred Review*
Booklist (US)
“Duo's Three Seconds does Stieg Larsson one better."** **"Americans are finally catching on to what thriller fans around the world already know — that the Swedish team of Roslund & Hellstrom is writing explosive crime novels as good, if not better, than those of Stieg Larsson ... Roslund & Hellstrom pull out all the stops, peppering the story with unfathomable mysteries ... Gun play, explosions, betrayals and the ingenious ways drugs and weapons are smuggled into prisons give this novel, Roslund & Hellström's fifth, an eau de testosterone level that's through the roof.”
USA Today (US)
“Three Seconds, the title, is the time in the book that a shot being fired hits its target. Three Seconds hits its target. It is a tour de force.”
New York Journal of Books (US)
“Looking for a cozy mystery to warm the winter months? Let's see. A handful of hoity-toity English types — tasteful but troubled — gathers at a country manor and —mon Dieu — one of them turns up dead in a locked room. Sound about right? If that's your cup of tea, avoid Anders Roslund and Borge Hellstrom's Three Seconds like the plague. It offers no suspicious servants, nobody wears an ascot, and it doesn't end with the entire cast (minus corpse) gathered around a dinner table for a shocking reveal. The rest of us are in luck. The crime novel-writing team of Roslund and Hellstrom tackles weighty subjects, and their credentials suggest we should take them seriously ... Trust me. No butlers were hurt in the making of Three Seconds. But everybody else is fair game. And that's exactly what crime-novel fans demand.”
Richmond Times-Dispatch (US)
“It's like Traffic on the Swedish-Polish border, but everything from the weather to the criminals' hearts is a little colder.”
People (US)
“Twisty plot makes for propulsive reading.”
Entertainment Weekly (US)
“Three Seconds will peal the paint off anything you've read lately in the annals of crime ... Prepare yourself for an electrifying standoff between a brilliant criminal who maps his future beyond death and a bulldog inspector with nothing to lose. The second half ofThree Seconds is psychological suspense on a grand scale. No wonder Roslund and Hellstrom are the darlings of European crime fiction. Grab your copy of Three Seconds and welcome the next big thing to America.”
Madison County Herald (US)
“These guys are their own kind of writers and if you love crime fiction you owe it to yourself to check out this book. Mobsters, drug dealers, corruption and loads of action. This is pure straight up Crime Fiction, no chaser, no apologies.”
Crimespree Magazine (US)
“Harsh and brutal ... Non-stop and the tension unlimited ... Well-written and powerful.”
The Times (UK)
“Three Seconds invites comparison with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. There is the same obsessive detail, the same corruption of the authorities, and even Larsson's tactic of the slow introductory chapters that suddenly shift into a higher gear ... R & H have even managed to freight in some cogent aperçus about the nature of identity amid the clammy suspense. Three Seconds is no dumbed-down blockbuster.”
The Independent (UK)
“High hopes for Three Seconds - justifiably so.... Superb.”
The Guardian(UK)
“This is crime writing at its most ambitious and morally complex. A visceral, demanding read filled with the kind of insider knowledge that raises it from the pack.”
Financial Times (UK)
“A compulsive page-turner”
Mail on Sunday (UK)

Tre Sekunder | Sweden | Piratförlaget
3 секунди | Bulgaria | Era
Tres Segons | Catalán | RBA
China (under translation) | Straits Media (Simplified Chinese)
Tri Sekunde | Croatia | Znanje
Tři vteřiny | Czech Republic | Euromedia
Tre Sekunder | Denmark | Rosinante
Estonia (under translation) | Eesti Ramaat
Kolme Sekuntia | Finland | WSOY
Trois Secondes | France | Fayard
3 Sekunden | Germany | Blanvalet
3 Sekunden | Germany | Fischer
Három Másodperc | Hungary | Animus
Þrjár sekúndur | Iceland | Bjartur & Veröld
Indonesia (under translation) | Mizan
Three Seconds | Israel | Sela Books
Tre Secondi | Italy | Einaudi
Three Seconds | Japan | Kadokawa
Three Seconds | Korea| Singongsa
Trys Sekundés | Lithuania | Metodika
Drei Seconden | Netherlands | De Geus
Tre Sekunder | Norway | Cappelen Damm
Trzy Sekundy | Poland | Albatros
Três Segundos | Portugal | Planeta
Trei Sekunde | Romania | Trei
Tri Sekondy | Russia | Inostranka
Tri Sekunde | Slovenia | Mladinska knjiga
Tri Sekundy | Slovakia | Ikar
Tres Segundos | Spain | RBA
Three Seconds | Taiwan | Azoth (Complex Chinese)
Turkey (under translation) | Ithaki
Three Seconds | UK & Commonwealth | Quercus
Three Seconds | US | Quercus