Mystery Authors You May Have Missed
Henning Mankell

Photo http://www.henningmankell.com/

Biography
Swedish author Henning Mankell was born in 1948 to a judge father and librarian mother. He divides his time between Sweden and Mozambique where, along with his wife, theater director Eva Bergman, he runs the Teatro Avenida, part of the World Theater Project.

What he writes: Mankell is a best-selling novelist, children’s book author, screenwriter, and playwright in Sweden. In the United States, he is best known for his Kurt Wallander police procedural series which has been translated into fifteen languages, including English. More of his numerous other published works for adults and children are being translated. The Kurt Wallander series is an example of Swedish noir. Middle-aged and dreaming of retirement, police detective Wallander is an “Old World cop on the edge of being overwhelmed by the unremitting brutality of New World crime.” (Bill Ott, Booklist). His character is comparable to other contemporary European detectives, such as John Harvey's Charlie Resnick and Donna Leon's Guido Brunetti. Though dark, the plots contain fascinating and compelling detail and the characters are richly drawn, engaging the reader on an emotional level.

List of works
 
Kurt Wallander Series
  Faceless Killers (1991) The Fifth Woman (1996)
  The Dogs of Riga (1992) One Step Behind (1997)
  The White Lioness (1993) Firewall (2002)
  Sidetracked (1995)  
     
Also translated...
  Secrets in the Fire (2003), a youth novel about children and war
  The Return of the Dancing Master (2004), about police officer Stefan Lindman
  A Bridge to the Stars (2004), a young adult novel
  Before the Frost: A Linda Wallander Mystery (2005)
  Chronicler of the Winds (2006), not a mystery, but rather the story of Nelio, a dying 10-year-old leader of street kids in an African port
   

Awards

Nils Holgersson Plaque, 1991, for The Dog that Ran Towards a Star; Swedish Academy of Detective Stories Award and Scandinavian Criminal Society Award, both 1991, for Faceless Killers; Deutscher Jugendliteraurpreis, 1993, for The Dog that Ran Towards a Star; Swedish Academy of Detective Stories Award, 1995, for Sidetracked; Listeners Prize, Swedish Radio Program I, 1996, for Comedia Infantil; Astrid Lindgren Award, 1996; award from newspaper Expressen, 1997, for The Boy Who Slept with Snow in His Bed; Children's Book Award, City of Berlin, 1997, for The Secret of Fire; August Award, 1998, for A Voyage to World's End; Golden Paperback Award, 1999, for Sidetracked and The Fifth Woman; Los Angeles Times Book Award nominations, 2003, for The Dogs of Riga, and 2004, for The Return of the Dancing Master.

 
What the critics say
...as in the classic Martin Beck series, Mankell combines "compelling procedural details with strong social consciousness." He also noted that "the European hard-boiled novel has taken the subgenre in a largely new direction: the heroes of this new breed of crime novel respond to the chaos of the modern world with sinking shoulders." — Booklist (February 1997), Bill Ott review of Faceless Killers; Booklist (August 1998), Bill Ott review of The White Lioness; Booklist (April 1999), Bill Ott review of Sidetracked; Booklist (July 2000), Bill Ott review of The Fifth Woman
Wallander continues to be "a solid character, whose strengths and weaknesses are utterly credible . . . Mankell . . . knows how to make the most of his virtues." "The author's treatment of modern themes such as juvenile killers and broken families adds richness to what is essentially a straightforward police procedural." — Publishers Weekly (March 29, 1999)
“...intricate plotting, chilling psychological divination, and thrilling police procedural” — Library Journal (June 1, 2000), Rex E. Klett review

 

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