There’s a reason this book – available for the first time in the U.S. – seems more like a sketch of a book than an actual book. Mankell explains in his notes that he was asked to write a story for a giveaway for those who purchased a crime novel in a particular month in Holland. Still, even Mankell’s sketches make for compelling reading. Both the author and his character have aging and death on their minds (it is their autumn, I think), and the result is a sad story of the way both a people and a place change. Mankell is, reliably, interested in the way crime has changed because the world has changed.

As a bonus, Mankell has written a brief, insightful essay on the origins and evolution of his Wallender novels. That itself makes this book worth the read.

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