Sigi gave me this book when we met in Berlin last months. I don't think it has been published in English yet. The title means ' the child-collector'. I finished it in 2 weeks, all526 pages of it.
Coincidently this is extremely topical... Anna and her husband go on a holiday to the Toscana in Italy, and during this holiday, her son vanishes without a trace. 10 years later, her marriage in tatters, Anna returns to the Toscana to build a new life, to have 'a fresh look and try to find out what's happend. She gets very close to the child-collector.
this is not a 'who done it' story, the reader knows from the begining who the child-collector is. In the first part of the book, we get slowly introducted to the weird world of Alfred. Lots of flashbacks gives us a look into his childhood without being too 'forceful' (e.g. this is why he is the way he is....), as a reader you have to make up your own mind. Especially at the beginning, I had to stop reading, I couldn't continue, my throat was choked up. he 'captures' a little boy, and all the little boy could think in his final minutes 'it will be christmas soon'...
We get to know the police who is on his trail (less or more), Carla, his girlfriend whom he treats worse than a doormat but who stays with him and endures all of his odd behaviour (are there really girls out there like her? I'm afraid there are) and finally Anna will provide the clue. the end was satisfiying.
I couldn't put it down, but be warned - it is not for the faint-hearted.