Jenn's Reviews > Before the Frost

Before the Frost by Henning Mankell
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's review
Aug 18, 10

really liked it
bookshelves: e-book, fiction, mystery, read-2010
Read in August, 2010

I'm still not sure that Mankell has sold me on Linda Wallander following in her father's footsteps but, at least in this book, it's clear that he's allowing for that doubt -- not even Linda is sure she should be taking up Kurt's mantle. Yet in this book, there she goes, drawn up into the investigation of a brutal murder and the disappearance of a close friend only a few weeks before she's scheduled to take up her police uniform. What pans out is an interesting book -- not focused on the center of the investigation, for most of it, but viewed from the outside, mostly from Linda's perspective, as Wallander tries to organize and lead the troops once again.

Her view of Wallander is often even less sympathetic than the rather brutal treatment he's given himself over the years. This actually works for the character, who comes off as a brat about 75 percent of the time and can explain away a large amount of that behavior as a genetic predisposition toward brattiness. There are a few lovely moments of tenderness here, but actually fewer than in the usual Wallander book (where they almost always surround his daughter). It's a very Mankell mystery, down to the characters' needs to write thing down to organize their own minds and the attention to the gastric system.
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