Thursday, April 21, 2011

Another miserable Henning Mankell: The Troubled Man

This is Mankell's latest in his Kurt Wallander series. I thought I'd give him another go, despite the fact that I loathed and detested his recent effort The Man From Beijing:

Mankell's peculiar and thoroughly dated old-left, cold war politics, laughable in that book, surface again in the new one, The Troubled Man, only here we're subjected to an absurd form of anti-Americanism in place of an absurd anti-colonialism. 

The pity is that Mankell's hero, the Swedish detective Wallander, is a wonderfully entertaining creation, someone you can live with, book after book. He's a crusty old coot of 60, extremely human and fallible, but whose instincts are as sound as ever. In this new outing, Wallander's last - he succumbs to Alzheimer's at the end, Henning clearly killing him off - he thankfully transcends the author's ridiculous political obsessions and is the only reason anyone would bother to read this silly novel.

Do yourself a favour and read something else - anything!

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