The Axe Ship

Published: 2004 - Publisher: Politikens Forlag - Pages: 436

Not published in English

While attending a police course in Estonia, Detective Inspector Nina Portland stumbles upon the trail of a Russian sailor who was the main suspect in a mysterious case from her first years in the police force. The sailor was charged with murdering the crew of a ship that was found drifting in the North Sea, but he was acquitted because his guilt could not be proven in court. 

Intent on solving the old mystery, Nina Portland follows the trail. It first leads her into the Estonian winter, then to London and Scotland and back to Esbjerg and her own past, where lies and secrets she didn’t know about float to the surface. 

Ninas private investigation, however, has alerted both the British secret service and Islamic fundamentalists, and when she finally realizes that her wish to settle her account with the past endangers her life, it is too late for her to back out …

THE AXE SHIP is volume 1 in The Portland Trilogy.



Jensen is extremely competent

“The Axe Ship” is the hard-hitting title of Jens Henrik Jensen’s new novel. The subtitle “A Nina Portland thriller” indicates that there is more to come with this new policewoman as the main character. And indeed, she is not a bad replacement for CIA-agent Kazanski, the central character in “The Shrew in Kraków”, “The Jester in Murmansk” and “The Wolf in Banja Luka” – the trilogy which made Jens Henrik Jensen known and beloved as a thriller writer.
… Jens Henrik Jensen is extremely competent – no doubt about it. Fans can just go ahead [with his new book].

Blazing stronger than the September sun

“The Axe Ship” wants not only to discuss an event that took place eleven years ago, but also international terrorism as it currently dominates the world situation.
The novel has ambitions and intensity - and although it is Jens Henrik Jensen’s fault that I must keep my eyes open with matchsticks today, I forgive him. Because instead of a good night’s sleep I had a crime reading experience that is blazing stronger than the September sun.

A breathtaking thriller

The real story behind the novel is a fantastic story with a lot of loose ends. This story has inspired journalist and writer Jens Henrik Jensen, and the result is the breathtaking thriller, “The Axe Ship.” 
Jens Henrik Jensen’s picture of what lay behind the mysterious events in The North Sea is credible, and as a reader one breathlessly follows the story. But his novel is not just exciting. He is capable of making his main character Nina, and the characters that surround her, both in her private life and at work, come to life. 

The combination of a sophisticated and dynamic plot and fine psychological depictions of the private troubles Nina is facing as a single parent with a boyfriend she hardly has time to see, and a father that has been absent for many years, makes “The Axe Ship” a piece of literature that is rich in vitamins.

What do the readers say?

This is the first of his novels, I am reading. But it will surely not be the last.
♦ Miss Amager,

The Axe Ship is one of the best novels, I have ever read. And Nina is a wonderful, sharp lass.
♦ Anne, Esbjerg

What do you think?