Gripping suspense combines with probing social commentary in the new Kurt Wallander mystery. Inspector Kurt Wallander's long-anticipated vacation plans are interrupted by two horrific deaths: the self-immolation of an unidentified young woman and the brutal murder of the former minister of justice. As the police struggle to piece together the few clues they have, the killer strikes again. In a series that has taken Europe by storm, Sidetracked is already a bestseller in Sweden, where it won the 1997 award for Best Crime Novel of the Year. According to the Chicago Tribune, "If you remember with pleasure those wonderfully dour Swedish mysteries by Maj Sjwall and Per Wahl, you'll be glad to plunge into Mankell's Kurt Wallander mysteries." Mankell infuses the story with a searing look at the problems facing contemporary society, from the disintegration of the family and the exploitation of women to corruption and scandal at the highest levels of government. Rumpled but razor-sharp, Wallander remains a "solid character, utterly credible, and Mankell knows how to make the most of his virtues" (Publishers Weekly).
Fourth in the Kurt Wallander series.
In the award-winning Sidetracked, Kurt Wallander is called to a nearby rapeseed field where a teenage girl has been loitering all day long. He arrives just in time to watch her douse herself in gasoline and set herself aflame. The next day he is called to a beach where Sweden?s former Minister of Justice has been axed to death and scalped. The murder has the obvious markings of a demented serial killer, and Wallander is frantic to find him before he strikes again. But his investigation is beset with a handful of obstacles?a department distracted by the threat of impending cutbacks and the frivolity of World Cup soccer, a tenuous long-distance relationship with a murdered policeman?s widow, and the unshakably haunting preoccupation with the young girl who set herself on fire. Fascinating and astute, Sidetracked is a compelling mystery enhanced by keen social awareness.
From the Inside Flap
“Presents Mankell at his best…if you haven’t bought Sidetracked, do so ASAP” -- Los Angeles Times Book Review
“[I]t is Wallander’s voice . . . that captures us.” -- New York Times Book Review
“Mankell joins the worthy ranks of such past masters as Georges Simenon [and] Nicholas Freeling.” -- The Wall Street Journal
“Full of emotion yet cleanly written, apparently straightforward yet fraught with intriguing revelations, Mankell’s latest mystery is strongly recommended.” -- Library Journal
From the Back Cover