Review: The Chestnut Man by Søren Sveistrup


This was one of my recent NetGalley reads that took me completely by surprise and pulled me out of a 4-star slump. I was expecting a typical thriller with possible translation barriers but what I got was far more than I expected.

My rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Disclosure: I am part of an affiliate program which means that I may earn a small commission if you purchase through my affiliate links at no additional cost to you.

“Chestnut man, do come in. Chestnut man, do come in. Have you any chestnuts that you’ve brought for me today? Thank you kindly, won’t you stay…”


A brutal murder of a single mother is discovered by the murder squad in Copenhagen, her hand amputated and a chestnut man left at the scene. A revelation reveals that a fingerprint left on the chestnut matches the fingerprint of a young girl declared dead after she went missing a year ago. A series of similar murders occur, each more brutal than the next and the same chestnut figure and fingerprints found at the scene. The police must work fast to find out why the women are being targeted, the significance of the chestnut men, the mystery behind the fingerprint and crucially, the psychopath who is terrorising the city.

Action-packed thriller

Here is everything I look for in a thriller:

  • High intensity
  • Lots of action
  • Red herrings to put me off the scent
  • A justifiable motive
  • Moments that leave me speechless/ questioning everything I thought I knew
  • An interweaving plot that has been cleverly crafted
  • Main characters that are likable/ I can connect with
  • A great ending that isn’t rushed
  • A puzzle that I think I’ve worked out
  • Being absolutely completely wrong

This book ticked every box.

Classic Nordic noir

What even is Nordic noir?! I had no idea until recently and I’ve decided it’s definitely a genre I want to explore more of. It’s a type of Scandi crime fiction that often features dark storylines and gloomy settings. This book certainly had those two major characteristics. If you can recommend any books in this setting, please throw them my way.


Genre: Thriller, Nordic noir, crime
Pages: 528 (Kindle)
About the author: Søren Sveistrup is a Danish writer and producer. He was the acclaimed scriptwriter for the popular TV show ‘The Killing’.
Fun fact – we share a birthday🎂

4 thoughts on “Review: The Chestnut Man by Søren Sveistrup

  1. Seeing your Goodreads widget reminded me that I have not updated mine probably since March. Oh dear.

    I love that you look for action-packed thrillers that don’t rush the ending too. That’s my biggest qualm with any book really. It’s especially bothersome if the book seems to drag just to fill pages. Then, the good stuff starts happening again, and bam, it’s done. You are left thinking: What the hell just happened, and why was this so poorly paced?!

    I am working on our NC book list this weekend ; ) Have a great one!


    1. So true, I’ve not read many thrillers recently as I find too many just end abruptly or aren’t paced right. It’s probably the hardest genre to nail in my opinion. This one had everything though and it was such an unexpected delight! Oh dear, I pride myself on being on top of my Goodreads hahaha. It’s the only way I can keep track! Have a great weekend too 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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