DEATH ARRIVED by brewery truck/lorry (döden kom med ölbil). That’s the opening sentence in The Democratic Terrorist (Den demokratiske terroristen), Swedish author Jan Guillou’s second book in the series about secret agent Carl Hamilton. Code name Coq Rogue. It was adapted into a film in 1993, with the brilliant Stellan Skarsgård as Hamilton. I don’t think I’ve seen it, though.

The plot is simple. Verfassungsschutz, the security police in West Germany, asks Sweden to help them infiltrate a group connected to terrorist group Rote Armee Fraktion. Carl Hamilton goes undercover, pretending to be a disgraced and ostracised Swedish officer. His alleged crime: Having been in contact with an East German spy.

Hamilton travels to Hamburg where he infiltrates the terrorists. As a member of their group, he’s involved in the planning of an attack on the CIA headquarters in Stockholm…

Jan Guillou is a famous journalist, columnist, author and publisher in Sweden, and one of my favourite writers. I’ve read all of the books in the Coq Rogue series, but he’s also written a crusades trilogy that I’ve yet to read. They are set in a fictional medieval universe where Arn, the son of Birger Jarl, rides to Jerusalem to become a Knight’s Templar. I think.

What I love about Guillou’s writing is that, stylistically, he’s similar to Salman Rushdie. He has a way of painting whole worlds with his words, and weave socio-political and psychological aspects into the canvas. Whether he writes fiction or factual pieces, he always touches something deep inside my writer’s soul. And that’s regardless of whether I enjoy the plot or agree with the point he’s making.

I guess some people have a certain flair that makes their writing brilliant. The rest of us just have to write, write, and write some more hoping that practice will make us better. 

– Now, let me hear your favourite opening sentence.   

Let’s talk! You’re welcome to drop links to your posts using today’s prompt in the comments below.

See you tomorrow,

//E.  😘

© Evalena Styf, 2022

Writing prompt from #WordPress 365 Days of Writing Prompts: 5 January, Take the first sentence from your favourite book and make it the first sentence of your post.