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Kepler has a special gift, if that's the word for it, for writing the dialogue of the insane. When one of Erik's patients vandalizes his house, Erik confronts her: "You broke our window." She snaps back, "The rock broke the window." That's the sound of psychopathy--blindly, madly, relentlessly self-justifying. One convincing psychotic is about as much as most thriller writers can manage, but Kepler delivers them by the roomful. It makes you wonder where the Swedes have been keeping him/them all this time. I imagine a cabal of nefarious Stockholm publishers loading bulk orders of Larsson onto cargo planes bound for the U.S. while they rub their hands together over a copy of The Hypnotist stamped NOT FOR EXPORT. It's that good. It's the hard stuff.