Herb Hastings's Reviews > One Step Behind

One Step Behind by Henning Mankell
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M 50x66
's review
Nov 09, 2010

really liked it

** spoiler alert ** Once again our depressed detective goes against a clever serial killer. This time (spoiler) one of the continuing characters from the earlier books is one of the victims. Wallander gets to be depressed about finding the killer, stopping him from killing again, and the realization that a coworker has to die before he bothered to get to know him. This review sounds tongue in cheek, and it is, but the book is not. The toll that working in law enforcement is made very real in these books. Wallander is not Dirty Harry who can shoot 3 robbers and then calmly finish his hot dog. The reality of the aftermath of using lethal force is much uglier and complex. That is where these books shine. Dirty Harry is at best a fantasy, at worse, a psychopath. Wallander is a flawed complex character who struggles to maintain his humanity while dealing with the worst in humans.

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