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Profundidades

3.39  ·  Rating details ·  2,067 ratings  ·  258 reviews
En octubre de 1914, pocos meses después del estallido de la Primera Guerra Mundial, el oficial de la Marina sueca Lars Tobiasson-Svartman recibe la orden de embarcar en el acorazado Svea para cumplir una misión secreta relacionada con las rutas marítimas. Hidrógrafo experto en medir las profundidades marinas, Lars es un hombre reservado y silencioso acostumbrado a guardar ...more
Paperback, 312 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by TusQuets (first published 2004)
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3.39  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,067 ratings  ·  258 reviews


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Kurt
Jul 18, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The shittiest, most depressing book I've yet stumbled across. People refer to their frustration with a book by saying they threw the book across the room. I don't think anyone really does that except.... with this book I did. Hard. Far.

We are to have empathy for someone who has none, enjoy reading about a sociopath and his objectification of other people for what personal gain for ourselves? After reading, I think, every book by Henning Mankell (except the last Kurt Wallander) I question Mankell
...more
Daniel
Apr 28, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
I have not the words to describe just how much I disliked this book.

The main character is so unremittingly horrible, so entirely devoid of any worth, that it is difficult to find anything positive in reading of his experiences.

The prose is nothing special, the story unremarkable, and the only character of note so hideous that it is difficult to comment on anything else.

For whatever reason I read it to the end, thinking perhaps something would change, but it did not, and the main character only g
...more
Erin
Nov 09, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I really love Mankell's Swedish Detective Kurt Wallander series. So with no new translations due for awhile, I decided to give one of his non-Wallander books a try. On a positive note, I can now say that I know more than I ever thought possible about making depth soundings in the Stockholm archipelago. I can only hope that knowledge comes in handy at some point in my life, otherwise I have lost about 6 hours of my life for naught.
Tony
Nov 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mankell, Henning. DEPTHS. (2004). *****. In this novel, another of Mankell’s non-series works, he explores the several meanings of depth. The protagonist is Lars Tobiaason-Svartman, a member of the Swedish navy. The time is 1914, at the beginning of the Great War. Lars is a hydrographer, one who measures the depths of the ocean floor in order to produce nautical charts for use by the government. His most cherished possion is his sounding lead, which he had made for him in Manchester, England. He ...more
Glenys Parslow
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Readers who find this an uncomfortable even unpleasant read will eventually realise that the author is keeping the reader inside the mind of a psychopath. A psychopath can remain outwardly normal and functional. The signs are there but you have to know how to read them. I nearly gave up on this novel several times but in the end I was so glad I perservered with this evil man. The first reveal only comes when he reads the ship's captains' diary. This is the stunning moment when we see him from an ...more
Bettie☯
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Noal
Nov 10, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hey, I really liked this book. Nice to read something else by Mankell that is not a Kurt Wallander "Mystery" I guess what I have always found appealing about the Wallander series is that they are less about "whodunnit" and more about the daily grind of life and life crisis. It is almost like the detective cases take a back seat to family deaths, when to scheldule the laundry room, divorce, diabetes, failed love etc. Kind of like the Hank Moseley series by Charles Willeford.

Depths is a little bi
...more
Deborah Coleen Black
This novel will haunt me forever; it was, quite simply, a masterpiece. Occasionally, you read a novel so vivid and compelling that you almost feel as if you have experienced it rather than having just merely read it; this is one such example. Maybe this is because the author so deftly gets you inside the head of the psychopathic main character; a man obsessed with assessing distances and measuring sea depths. He is also a man who does not know his own mind, who cannot measure his own depths so t ...more
Mikhail Yukhnovskiy
I finished reading the book. This is one of the books I've been reading for years. I bought and and started reading it two, or even three years ago. At last, I settled myself to finish it, and I did. The book is quite true to its name in many ways. Not least because of the way it is written I felt I was drowining in slow and deep waves. The prose is very sparse. The chapters are often one page long - and most often two pages long (there are 403 pages split up into 206 chapters). At first the atm ...more
Laura
Sep 20, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Should be called "Depths of Depravity." I love Mankell's mystery series; this is not one of them. He set out to write a novel about the depths to which a soul can sink, and succeeds: I was so disturbed I had to stop reading half way through. While there is some physical violence in the book, it's secondary to the psychological twistedness of the characters. Some people will love this; to say I was "unsettled" is a gross understatement. I'll stick to his Kurt Wallendar novels, which have a humane ...more
Lobstergirl
Sep 22, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Max Baucus
Recommended to Lobstergirl by: Donovan McNabb
Shelves: fiction
It wasn't until about 100 pages in that this book, one of Mankell's non-mysteries, began to absorb me. It's the story of a Swedish naval engineer at the outbreak of World War I who is sent on a secret mission to measure the depths of various sea channels so warships can safely navigate. He seems fairly normal at first, but in his relationships with his wife, a wild woman he meets on a desolate island, various colleagues, certain small animals, his father-in-law and others, we soon see that he is ...more
Asghar Abbas
Nov 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

The book is as sad and lonely as the island it depicts. Island of chance encounters, island of hope, island of peace, island of illicit despair, and eventually island of madness.

I found this book interesting, obviously because of the island in it bore an uncanny resemblance to my own.

But an excellent, excellent novel.

This one of the most beautiful novels I have ever read. How I love this book. There's so much to this finely crafted story of madness. It spoke to me on so many levels. This book is
...more
Marcia
Oct 22, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book is chilling.....I am almost sorry i read it. The main character is not sympathetic in any sense of the word. I don't think I shake the impression of awfulness that he imparted.
Meera
Feb 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Understandable Insanity :D
Paul Foley
May 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Lars Tobiasson-Svartman is a meticulous Swedish naval officer, a hydrologist who instinctively and perhaps compulsively thinks in terms of measurement. There is an almost comical side to his insistent quest for precision and rationality, as when he sleeps with his sounding lead clutched to his chest like a teddy bear. It gradually becomes apparent however that there is something dark and foreboding about this clutching to the rational, and as the novel progresses he becomes increasingly unglued. ...more
eric
Feb 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very difficult to decide how to rate this. I really wasn't it to it at the beginning. The main character is a Swedish bathymetry measurer ('hydrologic engineer') during early W.W. 1. The story initially is slightly bizarre but didn't really grab me. Maybe because the writing is very stolid, very stereotypically Scandanavian. It's a third person affair, and the main character tries (pretty successfully) to keep everything bottled up. As things progress, he ends up letting more than a little of hi ...more
Rachelle Urist
Aug 31, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ahhhh. This wonderfully wrought novel has all the suspense of a Wallander mystery, without being a crime novel - though crimes are committed, and there's a character aboard ship named "Wallender". The protagonist, Lars, takes us deeper and deeper into his compulsions, with Mankell in full control at the helm. The writing is fluid, the sailing is smooth, but there are dangerous undercurrents and mesmerizing eddies. Mankell's command of marine science is in full play here, but he wears his learnin ...more
Ingo
Sep 30, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ein beklemmendes Buch, nicht der typische 'Wallander-Mankell'. Es ist der Blick in die Tiefen einer Seele und der (Lebens-)Kampf des Mannes, der versucht, dort einen festen Grund zu finden.
Das Buch hat mich auf eine gewisse Art ergriffen - und das macht es zu einem guten Buch... :)
Jeffrey
This is the story of a Swedish naval officer in the early 1900s who has become obsessed with measurements and his own kind of logic. And it's this Obsession that leads him into a kind of Madness. The first part of the book went faster than the last. Towards the end I just wanted to get it over with. I like the author's Wallander stories more. I'm looking forward to reading more Mysteries by Mankell.
Edward H. Busse, III
Mar 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-owned
A real departure from what I usually read. I was very surprised by how much I liked the story, the setting, the characters and the pace. Mr. Mankell's writing style is easy to follow and he leaves no gaps in the story or the development of the characters. I read this book in just a few days simply because the story built and built and, giving credit to the author, it kept me engaged and wanting to know how it ends. The author is Swedish and this book was translated to English in 2006 - it was or ...more
Asha
Sep 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lars Tobiasson-Svartman, measurer of ocean depths, charting the seas around the Swedish archipelago with a sounding lead and rope, on a secret mission for the Swedish navy, 1914, the days before sonar.

Autumn. The arrival of winter. Frozen seas. Fog. Islands connected by ice. The holes through which the sea breathes. The silence.

Ostergotland. Norrkoping. Valdermarsvik. Graholmarna. Krakmaro. Hokbadan. Halsskar. A journey across distances. And into madness.

"His earliest memories were to do with me
...more
Patrick Early
Aug 03, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mankell is far more than another airport thriller writer. He is also a poet, with a telling gift for evoking landscape. This book, set in remote islands of the Swedish archipelago during the first World War is an extraordinary achievement. It is essentially the portrait of a married naval officer from Stockholm who, while carrying out his duties sounding
out navigable channels, discovers a solitary woman living alone on an island. His sexual obsession with this woman leads him into a series of da
...more
Nicole
Didn't finish, so I can't rightfully do the star thing.

As a Stockholm lover and lover of melancholy, loner characters, I was very surprised not to be able to make myself finish this book before its Interlibrary Loan due date (no renewals, guess that made my decision for me). I didn't care about a single character in the book. The best "character" in the book was the Swedish winter.

A review on the back of the book praised it for exploring how a lonely individual can go bad. (I wish I wrote down t
...more
Mary
May 31, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not a Kurt Wallander mystery. That said, Depths is an arresting, disquiting story of obsession. The main character Lars adds Tobiasson to Svartman (tobiasson-Svartman) to create a softness in his name (his mother's maiden name). He is a military man of extreme precision who measures for a living. Set in neutral Sweden during WWI, Lars is ordered to remeasure ocean depths to find quicker, safer passages for military ships. Men die in his presence, often enough to create suspician, though he did n ...more
Peter
Sep 11, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It's not Wallander, but a similarly egocentric persona. The story of a well-married plodder who kicks over the traces and becomes fixated on a hermit-woman and becomes a fairly serious criminal as he pursues her. Again, good on the geographical setting (but I don't know about such huge treks across Baltic ice - even if it isn't the saltiest of seas). Another hollowed-out Mankell character who's driven, but, despite being an achiever in his first life, not gifted with any reflective powers at all ...more
Lorna
Oct 23, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this a really weird read. The main character was reprehensible socio/psychopath? obsessed with figures. The setting was the bleakest you can imagine. Not one of the characters was at all attractive or even interesting but after a few chapters I was glued to it!! Mankell's imagination outside his Wallander series is really quite weird. Must be the climate that does it!! I was going to give it just 3 but a book which fulfils none of my normal comfort areas but still keeps me enthralled mus ...more
Chris Witkowski
Nov 02, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This has got to be one of the most bizarre novels I have ever read. Mankell is great at creating unlikable characters, but he has really taken the prize with his depiction of the Swedish Naval Officer, Lars Tobiasson-Svartman. The books starts out innocuously but then gradually develops into a creepy story of a truly evil man who manages to lure two women into his sick life, impregnate them and then ruin their lives. Only recommend it if you like weird,sick stories.
Carey Combe
Mar 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, I can't say that I really 'enjoyed' this book but it is very good and I found it
Impossible to put down. The main character is utterly believable and his inner monologues brilliant. I loved him finding the diary - a first glimpse into his psychopathic personality. The book, after a slow burning start, got better and better and became real nail-biting stuff.
Mike Cruden
This is the only Henning Mankell book I haven't enjoyed. The plot goes round in repetetive circles and is so depressing, and the characters are depressing and uninteresting. I hoped that the naval battles of the 1st World War would play some significance but it was mentioned only peripherally. Very disappointing.
Phil Griffin
Jun 19, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I have liked all of Mankell's books and I am a big fan of the Wallander series, but this book was one of the worst things I have read in some time. The protagonist had no redeeming qualities and was truly an a morale person. I would not suggest this as a book to read for anyone I like.
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What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Bleak Scandinavian Romance/Crime [s] 8 229 Jan 30, 2017 12:59AM  
not so bad a book 4 10 Oct 10, 2013 06:09AM  
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Henning Mankell was an internationally known Swedish crime writer, children's author and playwright. He was best known for his literary character Kurt Wallander.

Mankell split his time between Sweden and Mozambique. He was married to Eva Bergman, Swedish director and daughter of Ingmar Bergman.
“Just as no significant work of art can be created without the element of irrationality that is in fact the artist's talent." p.179

"He wondered if there was a greater distance than the one between two people in the same bed pretending to sleep." p.213”
4 likes
“The skerry was resting in the sea. It was like being in a cradle, or on a deathbed, he thought. All the voices hidden in the cliff were whispering. Even rocks have memories, as do waves and breakers. And down below, in the darkness where fish swam along invisible and silent channels, there were also memories.” 3 likes
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