"Der Tod tanzt in Graz" by Robert Preis

To mix up my reading pattern I recently set out to read a crime novel set in Graz by Robert Preis called “Der Tod tanzt in Graz” (“Death is dancing in Graz”). It is, if I counted correctly, by now the sixth book about the police investigator Armin Trost, his team, and their cases. This time, a murder gets committed during a folk music performance on the “Teichalm”, around 30 km from Graz. If one murder wouldn’t be bad enough, the circumstances are extremely weird and eventually the story goes down into local folk tales all the way to the devil himself.

I had previously read the first book of the series - “Trost und Spiele” - which was also the authors first crime story and compared to that I quite enjoyed the story here 🙂 There is also a lot of action going on on the streets of Graz, various venues throughout the city, and the area surrounding it) so it never get boring. Fights, parties, chases, there should be something for everyone 🤣

There are even some excursions to other cities like Munich but Graz is still the star here. If you’ve live here or have ever visited, you will definitely discover lots of familiar places in this book. If you’ve never been to Graz, though, I’m not sure if this new novel is something for you. While there is a lot of story, there is also a lot of “tourist-guide” content where you get most out of it if you know the places.

Most of the characters are quite believable and I even somehow warmed up to the main protagonist this time. I still don’t like Armin Trost but I at least don’t hate him anymore and I prefer him to most of the other members of his team 😉 But, as I said, I think most of the characters are believable but also a bit exagerated. Tone the Styrian factor down a little and you might recognize some of them while walking through the city.

Will I be reading the other parts in the series or future novels, though? Probably not. Local crime stories are still not my thing, despite me giving them a try every couple of years. This time I at least had the benefit of reading this alongside my partner so we could exchange observations and findings 😄

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