» He runs into Judith Krieger on the platform, a steaming paper cup in her right hand, one of her reeking hand-rolled cigarettes in the corner of her lips.
Her leather coat is dark with moisture, her hair is plastered to her head, giving her the charm of a drowning cat – a fact that doesn’t seem to bother her in the slightest. «


the detective

She’s headstrong and vulnerable. Clever and intuitive. Passionate and stubborn. She dreams of justice – but knows it rarely exists. She smokes too much and sleeps too little when she’s plagued by thoughts of the dead. She doesn’t care about fashion or conventions. She lives alone, prefers beer to wine and listens to rock music by Manfred Mann and Patti Smith. Now and then she lays tarot cards, and although she tries not to allow them too much power over her life, the cards never lie to her.

In the murder squad, Detective Inspector Judith Krieger is usually the only woman surrounded by men – and she has a chequered past career. But she was still the top detective until her best friend and partner was shot dead on the job. Since then she’s been thin-skinned, fighting the ghosts of her past, a life with too many goodbyes. Judith Krieger only learns to value her new partner Manni Korzilius very gradually. And she even starts to like him.

Name: Judith Krieger   Born: 10 June 1966 in Berlin-Wilmersdorf   Marital status: single, no children   Father: Thomas Engel, law student – died in Kathmandu in 1969   Mother: Eva, doctor’s receptionist, married to Judith’s adoptive father Wolfgang Krieger since 1970   Siblings: Two half-brothers – the twins Edgar and Artur   Height: 5’7”   Weight: About 145 pounds   Eye colour: Grey   Hair colour: Mahogany red   Distinguishing marks: Blue ring around her irises, freckles, curls   Place of residence: Cologne, Germany   Training: Law degree, police training school   Previous jobs: Barmaid, newspaper delivery girl, night watchwoman at a women’s refuge   Rank: Detective Inspector   Stationed: Cologne Police Headquarters, Murder Squad   Likes: 70s rock music. Warm summer nights on her roof terrace. Boules in the park   Dislikes: Pressure. Self-satisfaction   Dreams: A better world   Vices: Hand-rolled cigarettes   Strengths: Intuition   Weaknesses: Fear of heights. And a propensity for melancholy