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The Stages: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Thom Satterlee
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $24.99
Kindle Price: $6.99
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  • Length: 386 pages (estimated)
  • Prime members can borrow this book and read it on their devices with Kindle Owners Lending Library.
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Book Description

Daniel Peters, an American living in Copenhagen, becomes the main suspect in a murder investigation. To clear his name and to get back to the orderly life he so dearly prizes, Daniel must cooperate with homicide detective Ingrid Bendtner. But it’s not easy for Daniel. As a forty-three year old with Asperger’s Syndrome, even the slightest deviation from his regular schedule unnerves him. But what choice does he have? If he doesn’t cooperate with the Police, he may be sent to jail or deported back to Buffalo, NY—frightening possibilities to a person who's grown used to his solitary life of single-minded work. Set in the capital of Denmark and featuring a cast of characters that includes Lutheran priests, Søren Kierkegaard scholars, law enforcement agents, a forgery expert, and the Director of the Royal Library, The Stages is a sometimes funny, sometimes melancholy, often absurd, but always clever re-interpretation of the Scandinavian crime novel.

Editorial Reviews


Daniel Peters is an American living in Copenhagen. He works in the Kierkegaard Research Center as a translator and suffers from Asperger's. When his boss (and former fiancée) is murdered soon after the discovery of a new Kierkegaard manuscript--a collection of poetry believed by some to be a forgery--Daniel is a prime suspect. His condition makes it difficult for him to tolerate changes to his routine or interpret people's behavior, but he is drawn into the mystery despite himself and must work with the police to uncover the truth. Satterlee clearly is familiar with Copenhagen and Kierkegaard, and this knowledge grounds the story and lends it realism. This is a deftly crafted mystery that will leave readers curious and surprised, as well as empathetic to Daniel, whose Asperger's is portrayed realistically. -Publishers Weekly (Reviewed on 04/22/2013)

From the Author

This is my first novel.

Product Details

  • File Size: 569 KB
  • Print Length: 386 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00AQA6JJ0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #246,442 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant, genre-bending mystery crime novel December 22, 2012
By Jon
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I must confess that the "mystery crime" genre is somewhat alien to me. However, I thought that that was a very-well done part of the story that made me very excited to finish the plot. In addition to that, though, the writing style was so good that I also read it out of the sheer intrinsic value of appreciating good craftsmanship. The background information is solid, and it only lends value and significance to the narrator's excellent choice of words and verbiage (not to mention the author's, of course). Educationally, I have an English degree as a background (and graduate study), and it is one of the most fun novels I have ever read. I also enjoy Kierkegaard, philosophy, and theology (which I currently study), and, from that perspective, the thoughtful insights of the narrator peppered the novel with a gorgeous mental landscape and added a richer dimension on top of an already interesting "whodunnit." It's never overwhelming, though, and it always fits well along the path of the plot and narrative. I highly recommend it for absolutely anyone. It was a perfect read to decompress after a long semester.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story plus Kierkegaard December 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This novel, while being a first rate historical mystery, offers significant insight into the life and work of Soren Kierkegaard, about whom I knew little when starting the book. The author also does a fine job of describing the life of a man with Aspergers. As you read this, you will be entertained at the same time as you learn a great deal about these two subjects (and also Copenhagen and Danish pastries). The other characters are wonderfully drawn, the plot moves along quickly, and the door is open for a sequel. I highly recommend this work.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Addictive Mystery December 29, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was shocked by how much I learned about Kierkegaard by the end of this! That was probably my favorite part, I'm still thinking about the curious personality quirks I learned about.

It started slow and innocent and became quite the page turner by the end of the first third. I had no idea how it was going to resolve and was surprised by the ending. A great whodunit.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Literary Mystery October 1, 2013
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Satterlee's novel elevates genre fiction to literary fiction in the way only a poet and scholar can write. Very well worth the read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A satisfying, smart mystery December 29, 2012
By Amy
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
An intelligently written literary mystery, The Stages tells the story of Dan Peters, an American translator (and Aspie) living in Copenhagen. When his colleague and best friend dies mysteriously and a Kierkegaard manuscript goes missing, Peters seeks to clear his own name in the murder investigation.

With a strong setting, well-developed characters, surprising plot twists, and a solid grounding in philosophy, theology, and language, this book is heads and shoulders above most murder mysteries. Highly recommended.

(Currently only available on kindle- and a steal at 2.99!)
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting historical mystery with a couple of twists December 27, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I didn't quite know what to expect in a novel centered around the writings of Soren Kirkegaard, but not to worry... this is a wonderful novel based in Copenhagen. The characterization is excellent; the narrator and protagonist is an interesting character and his uniqueness provides the twist I reference in my title. The book is extremely well-written and the plot carries us along quite well. And still, we get to learn a lot about Soren Kierkegaard.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful novel that didn't know what it was! August 25, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This novel had a murder, a mystery, and a police investigation, but what enthralled me was none of the above - they were simply the events that the author used to give us a window into the detailed workings of the main character's mind. Daniel was a fascinating, realistic, quirky man, and the way a hot dog from a street vendor and his favorite hat can linger in my memory show that he is the work of a master character-maker. Unfortunately, about 3/4 of the way through the novel, the author appeared to remember that he was supposed to be writing a mystery novel, and dutifully focused on that, wrapped up all the loose ends and relegating the heart of the story to the shadows.

Very, very enjoyable for the most part - I am eagerly looking forward to more work from Mr. Satterlee, and hope he writes completely to his strengths in the next novel.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed from start to finish May 11, 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Character is everything for me when it comes to a good book. In The Stages, the main character Daniel is an American translator living in Denmark. Daniel has Asberger's so when the story is told through his eyes, the viewpoint is different, unique and interesting. Daniel is a very likable character who has managed, with the help of his friend, to live a fulfilling life doing what he loves. When his friend, who also happens to be his boss and really only friend, is murdered Daniel's life grows complex and he steps far outside his comfort zone to understand what happened.
I was surprised how much I enjoyed the book, the characters were interesting, the story was compelling and Daniel was interesting and likable. I'm looking forward to other books by this author.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read
Let's hope we get more novels from this excellent writer. My favorite kind of book, a mystery set in country I have not visited. Read more
Published 5 days ago by Lee
4.0 out of 5 stars A very different mystery
I've worked with many children with Asperger's, but not adults, and I've read little Danish literature or literature set there, so my knowledge of Danish culture is somewhat... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Regina
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great read!!!
Published 7 months ago by Kim Mitchell
5.0 out of 5 stars A book for those who want to exercise their mind.
I was impressed with the way the book was written ,the air of suspense and the detail. In the past I spent some time in Copenhagen and remember many of the street names, places... Read more
Published 7 months ago by MJ Colorado
3.0 out of 5 stars Who Killed Mette Rasmussen?
Daniel Peters is an American working as a translator at the Soren Kierkegaard Center in Copenhagen. He becomes embroiled in a murder case when his boss and former lover, Mette... Read more
Published 11 months ago by Dave Schwinghammer
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting
The book starts good and has you think about the novel. Characters are good and it identifies their position. *
Published 18 months ago by Charlene P.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great!
I could swear the author has Asperger's, he described it so well. Great story. This book also made me desire to read more from Kierkegaard.
Published 18 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good!
I really enjoyed this book. Interesting setting, characters and history. Very descriptive, but not over the top, writing, Made me want to travel to Denmark
Published 19 months ago by Amy
3.0 out of 5 stars Slow Read
If I find a novel interesting, I will normally finish the book in less than a week. This book took me two weeks. I found it to be slow developing and did not hold my interest. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Reuben Thompson
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating perspective
I wasn't sure what to expect here, and by the end I was pleasantly surprised. The first-person perspective combined with Asperger's and present tense was jarring at first, but as I... Read more
Published 19 months ago by J.L. Hughes
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More About the Author

Thom Satterlee has published seven books, most recently THE STAGES: A NOVEL. He is best known for his poetry collection BURNING WYCLIF--an American Library Association Notable Book and a finalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize in Poetry.

Thom also translates Danish poetry and fiction. In 1998 he won the American-Scandinavian Foundation Translation Prize for THE HANGMAN'S LAMENT: POEMS OF HENRIK NORDBRANDT. In 2011 he published THESE HANDS: POETRY OF PER AAGE BRANDT. Most recently, in 2014, he received a PEN/Heim Translation Fund Grant.

With his wife, Kathy, he lives in Marion, Indiana, in a 100-year-old home across from farm fields. Kathy teaches third grade at nearby Allen Elementary.

For more information, visit Thom's official website:

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