Tuesday, June 02, 2009

09.18 The Man Who Smiled by Henning Mankell

The Man Who Smiled (1994) by Henning Mankell
Trade, Vintage, 324 p.

Another excellent Henning Mankell book in the bank - I think I have read about a half dozen now. Mankell is a Swedish author who writes police procedurals about a detective, Wallander, in Ystad, 60 km south-east of the city of Malmö, in the southern province of Skåne.

Inspector Wallander is the classic loner: unmarried, strained relations with his family, few friends. He is, however, an excellent detective which is why it is shocking at the beginning of the book to find that he is considering quitting the police force. In the previous novel (The White Lioness) he killed a man in the line of duty and is now guilt ridden.

The strange death of a lawyer friends father and then the death of his friend serve to draw Wallander back into the fold. He assembles the old team and finds himself again through the rigors of the extensive investigation.

A good read.

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