After a witness was brutally murdered in her home, and after her husband and children were brought to safety in a hurry, the threat to DA Sylvia van Maele and her family remains imminent.  When a detective is killed in an attack, not much later, the investigation team takes the law into their own hands and decides to bend the rules and laws to face their enemies. When they slowly realize that the team is operating outside the law they decide to fight back fiercely. There is no way back. Has the team gone to far in their search for justice and revenge? 


  • Sample translation in English available here; read a translated Q&A with Simon de Waal here
  • Shortlisted for the two most prestigious crime prizes: Diamanten Kogel (Belgium) and Gouden Strop (Holland)
  • Simon de Waal is the author of a prestigious special book for the Crime Weeks in June 2016, Vector, which was printed in an edition of 400.000 copies and got great reviews
  • Simon de Waal has been working as a scriptwriter for more than two decades, contributing to numerous successful television shows and films
  • In 2000 he won a Golden Kalf (grand prize in the Dutch film industry) for his screenplay for the film Leak
  • In 2003 he started his own production company and co-produced several TV series and films, as well as the first movie he also directed: Cop vs Killer


Simon de Waal (1961) is a writer, scenarist, director, and homicide detective. He wrote the thrillers Cop vs Killer and Pentito, which were both nominated for several prizes. Together with Appie Baantjer he started the very successful De Waal & Baantjer detective series in 2009, in which twelve books were published.



‘True craftsmanship by De Waal, a modern day Morse, who recently excelled with Vector, a special gift during The Thrilling Books Weeks’ de Volkskrant

‘A good and exciting thriller’ Algemeen Dagblad ****

‘Again, De Waal shows us that he is very skilled in evoking the perfect ambience in his scenes. The grimness and the quest for retaliation just jump off the pages and you’re being immersed in the search for justice’ Hebban

‘The end is powerful, a fine action thriller from Holland’ Trouw

‘A very strong thriller for the sturdy women among us (and let’s not forget all those sturdy men)’ ***** Vrouwenthrillers

‘A gripping read. That’s the way a police thriller should be’ Thrillers leestafel

‘A well-written, robust thriller. Quick and tough, with a very interesting subject matter for those who like criminal affairs’ Dagblad van het Noorden

‘I would be surprised if this is not going to be made into a TV-series’ Maarten Moll, Het Parool

‘A terrific police novel, American style, action packed. De Waal writes graphically, so much so that this will almost certainly be made into a film**** Elsevier Magazine



PENTITO (2007) / COP vs KILLER (2005)



A thirteen-year-old Italian boy witnesses the murder of his whole family. Only by fleeing is he able to survive the clan war his family was involved in. When he is older, he learns that his father, the ‘treasurer’ of the mafia, was in possession of documents with which he would have been able to prove the connection between the Italian mafia and the reigning politicians. Now, years later, he lives under a false name, while his enemies think that he is dead.

Detective Bobby Meere, slowly recovering from a gunshot wound, is forced to interrogate pickpockets and shoplifters until he is ready to go out on the streets again. When he has to interrogate an Italian small-time crook, he expects to be able to go home early that day. But things turn out to be more complicated.

* Shortlisted for the Gouden Strop

* Winner of the Diamanten Kogel


Cop vs Killer

Together with his special police team, detective Frank Spinola is hunting the ruthless criminal Mirko Narian who is engaged in a gang war. Frank relies heavily on rules and laws; Mirko, on the other hand, has to kill in order to survive. When Frank’s family is in danger, everything changes. At the moment Mirko has to help out Frank’s daughter, who fell into the hands of a lover boy, Frank decides it is time to strike.

* The Dutch answer to Heat: Four days and nights in the life of a wanted kingpin

* Shortlisted for the Gouden Strop

* Simon de Waal directed the film based upon the book, with a great (and final) role by Jeroen Willems



On Cop vs Killer:

‘A firm, thorough police novel about ripdeals and vengeance, topical, contemporary, recognizable, grim and skilfull.’ NRC Handelsblad

On Pentito:

'The now and then violent story about an Italian informer has a rich atmosphere and excels in research.' NRC Handelsblad








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