Sarah Lund is packing up the contents of her desk on her last day with the Copenhagen police. Later that night, she, her son Mark and her partner Bengt will catch a plane to Sweden and start a new life.
But everything changes when the body of beautiful Nanna Birk Larsen is found in the back of a rental car in a canal. She's been raped and brutally murdered.
As her family tries to come to terms with their loss, Lund puts her relocation plans on hold, rolls up her sleeves and over the next 20 days leads the investigation to solve this puzzling murder.
The real surprise about this excellent recreation of the TV series is its author. David Hewson is a highly regarded British thriller writer whose books are mainly set in sunny Italy. To write The Killing, he moved to Copenhagen and spent a lot of time with the TV series writer Soren Sveistrup.
As might be expected of a novelisation of a 20-episode series, the plot of The Killing sets up enough red herrings to occupy the Danish fishing fleet for a month.
For those hooked by the cult show, there is a very solid reason for investing in the 700-page tome. Hewson has managed to add interesting insights into the main characters, as well as providing an intriguing and thought-provoking twist.