Another great mystery from Mr. Dahl. Like Henning Mankell, he doesn’t limit himself to just writing a crime novel. Instead, he uses a crime novel to explore and comment on societal issues, in this case, the way violence and the world are changing along side each other.

I also admire Dahl’s dexterity when it comes to handling an ensemble of characters. There is clearly a protagonist, but we don’t spend all of our time with him.

Dahl has a unique talent for writing about what it means to listen to (jazz) music. His last book, Misterioso, sent me in search of a Thelonious Monk CD; now I’m headed for Coltrane.

There is definitely an anti-American sentiment, and I can’t tell if I reacted to it because I thought he was taking easy jabs at the US, or because I thought he was right. In any event, he made me think.

The ending, though in a way deliberately predictable, is quietly brilliant.

[Full disclosure: Facebook friend]

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