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Snow White Must Die Audiobook, by Nele Neuhaus Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Nele Neuhaus Narrator: Robert Fass Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Series: The Bodenstein & Kirchhoff Series Release Date: January 2013 ISBN: 9781620645857
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,448 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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Snow White Must Die is a psychological thriller combined with a crime mystery. In the book, Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein are detectives investigating a strange traffic accident. A woman, Rita Cramer, was pushed from a bridge onto the car of a passing motorist below. Cramer is from a small village outside Frankfurt, Germany, and the detectives find a bigger mystery once they arrive in her hometown.

Cramer's son Tobias Sartorius has just returned to town after serving a prison sentence for the disappearance and murder of two teenage girls eleven years before. Bodenstein and Kirchhoff, along with the rest of the town, suspect he's the guilty party when another young woman turns up missing. Tobias, however, doesn't remember the first murders and claims to be uninvolved in his mother's accident and the newest disappearance.

The residents of the town know more than they are willing to admit to outsiders Bodenstein and Kirchhoff, however, and this hampers the investigation. Small town people have small town minds, at least in this case. Working without the support of the townspeople, the two detectives find unexpected connections between the new cases and the murders more than a decade before.

Author Nele Neuhaus is well-known in her native Germany for her Bodenstein and Kirchhoff series of psychological thrillers about the male and female detective team. Snow White Must Die is the fourth of six books Neuhaus has written about the pair, but it is the first to be translated into English. It is already an international best seller. The translation was done by Steven T. Murray.

On a rainy November day, police detectives Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein are summoned to a mysterious traffic accident: a woman has fallen from a pedestrian bridge onto a car driving underneath. According to a witness, the woman may have been pushed. The investigation leads Pia and Oliver to a small village, and the home of the victim, Rita Cramer. 

On a September evening eleven years earlier, two seventeen-year-old girls vanished from the village without a trace. In a trial based only on circumstantial evidence, twenty-year-old Tobias Sartorius, Rita Cramer’s son, was sentenced to ten years in prison. Bodenstein and Kirchhoff discover that Tobias, after serving his sentence, has now returned to his home town. Did the attack on his mother have something to do with his return? In the village, Pia and Oliver encounter a wall of silence. When another young girl disappears, the events of the past seem to be repeating themselves in a disastrous manner. The investigation turns into a race against time, because for the villagers it is soon clear who the perpetrator is—and this time they are determined to take matters into their own hands.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Exciting and well crafted…[Neuhaus] show[s] how the police’s off-duty preoccupations complicate and distract them from work and even jeopardize their safety.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “This novel is bursting with conspiracy and subterfuge and a raw exposition of the ugliness that can inhabit the human soul.”

    USA Today

  • “Neuhaus has a flair for the ominous and the ornate. Her primary setting…Altenhain is the anti-Christie town: Instead of quaintness, it offers decay; instead of Miss Marple, there’s a spiteful populace of voyeurs whose curiosity stokes the smoldering embers of violence.”

    Washington Post

  • “The story is dense, the plot riveting and the deduction letter-perfect…full of mystery and hidden secrets, silence and cover-ups.

    Globe and Mail (Toronto)

  • “An engrossing plot and that could make Neuhaus a contender for the kind of acclaim Stieg Larsson has won. Snow White Must Die moves at a brisk clip with a narrative that ranks as storytelling at its best.”

    San Jose Mercury News

  • Snow White Must Die…does an excellent job of exploring small-town venality as Kirchoff begins to suspect that it takes a village to cover up a murder. There are no magic mirrors or dwarves, but there are enough poisonous secrets lying fallow to take care of an entire apple orchard.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “With an entire town to populate and eleven years of history to explore, Nele Neuhaus had a monumental task ahead of her, one she tackled with impressive craft and style. Snow White Must Die is one mystery wrapped in a dozen others, startlingly capturing the long memory and insular nature of small towns everywhere.”

    San Francisco Book Review

  • “[An] impressive multidimensional police procedural.”

    Publishers Weekly (starred review)

  • “[It will] keep readers turning the pages up to the unpredictable ending…An addictively engaging mystery filled with suspects, confusion, love, and fear. Sure to intrigue and satisfy mystery fans, especially those who love international crime procedurals.”

    Library Journal

  • “Narrator Robert Fass shepherds the book along, differentiating characters with accents and shifts in tone. His narration helps the listener to follow the plot and keep track of the different characters as their involvement in the story unfolds…Fass’ skill provides the perfect delivery.”


  • Selected for the January 2013 Indie Next List
  • A 2014 International Thriller Writers Award Nominee
  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month for January 2013

Listener Reviews

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  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Margot | 2/19/2014

    " This novel was chock full of so many interesting characters that led us on so many twists and turns in trying to find out who was really responsible for the murder of two girls 11 years ago, that Tobias Santorius was convicted of doing and served a decade of his life in prison for. Once Tobias is released and returns to the small German village where it happened, Pandoras Box is opened and all hell breaks loose. Great read and an absolute page-turner! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christie | 2/18/2014

    " Pretty good at keeping me guessing till almost the end. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Daniela | 1/26/2014

    " Super Buch. Wirklich spannend bis zum Schluss. Sehr empfehlenswert. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Marybeth | 1/26/2014

    " I wanted to like this book. It was not a page turner. It felt like it moved incredibly slow. There were also to many little side stories that bogged things down. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Veronica | 1/20/2014

    " This is a fantastic novel. It is well written and a page turner with superb characters and a complex plot that unravels slowly as the police ferret out each clue. Secrets everywhere! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Rachelle | 1/18/2014

    " I would go 2.5 if I could. Tedious. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Robyn | 1/17/2014

    " Beginning 'snow white must die' is like being transported instantly to a small german village, being introduced to everyone who lives, or even who ever lived there, all at once, with bits and pieces of each person's life story, secrets and interrelationships dropped like sad breadcrumbs along the way...which is both the positive and the negative of this mystery...the customs and sense of brooding claustrophobic small town atmosphere is intense and beautifully done, the multiple subplots and villains not so much "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kelci | 1/15/2014

    " You will most definitely like this book if you enjoyed reading "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" series. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Peg | 12/22/2013

    " Truly smart who dunnit starting out 11 years after the crime with the release from prison of the young man found guilty of the murders of 2 teen age girls. Right from the outset we know there is something rotten in Denmark but with all the red herrings, it takes a while to sort it all out. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Maria | 12/16/2013

    " Good not great! I enjoyed this book because it is set in Germany (the author is German) and I am familiar with the setting. The story develops well, but becomes bit convoluted. The main characters seem aloof and distant. The premise a bit overdone. Having said all this, the book was a fun read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Melissa | 12/6/2013

    " The book was ok. i think something was lost in the translation. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Enid | 9/18/2013

    " An excellent complex mystery. It is what I had hoped The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo would be, without the graphic rape and torture scenes. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Marinda | 7/28/2013

    " I can't believe I finished this book. The first half, 2 stars. The last half, half a star. Ugh. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alison | 7/16/2013

    " Kept reading- which means it was better than a three, but I didn't love it. Hard to give it a four. that being said-- it had a good plot, interesting characters and a pretty decent translation. The ending felt a bit rushed. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Elaine | 6/19/2013

    " Everyone smokes too much in the book. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Paul | 5/22/2013

    " Don't bother. Was reviewed well at the time. Not sure why. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeanette | 5/5/2013

    " I really enjoyed this, even though it was difficult to keep track of the characters at the beginning. Great story with lots of twists and turns. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leanne | 2/8/2013

    " An engrossing crime / thriller with a satisfying number of twists & turns. Main characters are likeable & the setting in Germany makes the plot a bit different. "

About the Author

Nele Neuhaus is one of Germany’s most widely read crime authors thanks to her thrillers featuring the investigative duo of Pia Kirchhoff and Oliver von Bodenstein, which were launched in English with Snow White Must Die. Her novels have been translated into twenty languages.

About the Narrator

Robert Fass is a veteran actor and twice winner of the prestigious Audie Award for best narration. He has earned mulltiple Earphones Awards, including one for his narration of Francisco Goldman’s Say Her Name, which was named one of AudioFile magazine’s Best Audiobooks of 2011. He has given voice to modern and classic fiction writers alike, including Ray Bradbury, Joyce Carol Oates, Isaac Asimov, Jeffrey Deaver, and John Steinbeck, as well as to nonfiction works in history, memoir, health, journalism, and business.