It started off as an intriguing mystery. Two people murdered on a farm and it’s up to Wallander to figure out who committed the murder.
If you’re looking for a typical whodunnit murder mystery, you wouldn’t find it here in Henning Mankel’s first book. Instead, you’ll find a troubled police detective dealing with his own problems.
No, it’s not quite like a Joseph Wambaugh novel. Wallander wife has left him and he’s dealing with problems related to his father. He’s getting older and losing his memory. Wallander and his sister have to decide on putting his father in a home.
Wallander’s other issue is how his divorce is taking it’s toll on him. He seems to be attracted to any women that he meets, even if that woman is married and is the DA. It doesn’t seem believable to me when he makes a pass to this woman only to get slapped in the face. The scene seems to be forgotten about afterwards.
As a police procedural novel, you do get a lot of people being questioned but the investigation going nowhere. It seems to be drawn out to a point where it may never be solved. In the meantime, Wallander’s partner is in the hospital as well with cancer.
Mankell does great portrayals of characters in his book. Even though the book does have some great characters, I thought that I would see a detective that could be compared to DCI Banks or Peter Diamond. Not the case here though.
All in all, it’s hard for me to go above three stars for this book.