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The first title in the acclaimed Inspector Wallander series

One frozen January morning at 5am, Inspector Wallander responds to what he believes is a routine call out. When he reaches the isolated farmhouse he discovers a bloodbath. An old man has been tortured and beaten to death, his wife lies barely alive beside his shattered body, both victims of a violence beyond reason.
Wallander's life is a shambles. His wife has left him, his daughter refuses to speak to him, and even his ageing father barely tolerates him. He works tirelessly, eats badly, and drinks his nights away in a lonely, neglected flat. But now Wallander must forget his troubles and throw himself into a battle against time.


An exquisite novel of mesmerizing depth and suspense

Margo Kaufman, Los Angeles Times

Mankell is one of the most ingenious crime writers around. Highly recommended


Mankell is in the first division of crime writing

The Times

By far the best writer of police mysteries today

Michael Ondaatje

The novels become a compulsion - one reads them all

Daily Telegraph

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    April 1, 2012


    304 pages

    RRP $28.99

    Online retailers

    • Fishpond
    • Mighty Ape
    • Paper Plus
    • The Warehouse
    • Whitcoulls
    • The Nile

    Find your local bookstore at www.booksellers.co.nz/directory

  • EBook


    July 1, 2010

    Vintage Digital

    304 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks NZ
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Google Play
    • Kobo
    • Booktopia NZ

Also by Henning Mankell

After the Fire
The Man From Beijing
The Troubled Man
The Eye Of The Leopard
The Shadow Girls
An Event in Autumn
Wallander's First Case
A Treacherous Paradise
Italian Shoes
Kennedy's Brain
The Pyramid
Before The Frost
The Return Of The Dancing Master
The Journey to the End of the World
When the Snow Fell
Chronicler Of The Winds
The Man Who Smiled
The White Lioness
I Die, But The Memory Lives On
One Step Behind


Make Me
The Girl on the Train
The Thirst
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
The Store
Don't Let Go
The Couple Next Door
The Handmaid's Tale
I Am Pilgrim
To Kill A Mockingbird
The Girl Who Was Taken
Never Never
The Lost Symbol
The Word Is Murder
A Gentleman in Moscow
The President is Missing
The Temptation of Forgiveness
Baby Teeth