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Book Club: Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell

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Book Club: Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell
Henning Mankell is one of Sweden's leading crime writers. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT
09:33 CET+01:00
Each month, The Local Sweden's Book Club reads a different book with a Swedish link. In November, we're reading a Nordic Noir classic, Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell.

The murder that kicks off the story is a grisly and senseless one.

In a rural Swedish farmhouse, an elderly couple have been brutally tortured, and before the wife dies of her injuries she is able to utter just one word: "foreign". 

Inspector Wallander soon becomes obsessed with solving this crime, which feels like it could aggravate anti-immigrant tensions in Sweden. It's a dark, suspenseful and topical novel even two decades after first publication, and I know a lot of our Book Club members are big fans of detective fiction and Mankell, so we're looking forward to discussing Faceless Killers with you all.

Mankell's novels have become international bestsellers and Faceless Killers is the book in which we're first introduced to opera-loving detective Kurt Wallander. One year after its publication, it won the inaugural Glass Key award, which was set up to honour the year's best Nordic crime novel, and the Wallander series has been adapted for TV and film. The book was translated into English by Steven T. Murray.

Later in the month we'll be speaking to a Nordic noir expert about the book, Mankell and Sweden's crime-writing tradition. Got any questions? Send them to bookclub@thelocal.se.

Join The Local Sweden's Book Club on Facebook and sign up to our newsletter to receive updates and highlights from the group, have your say in what we read next, and chat to fellow bookworms.

And you can always get in touch by email (Members of The Local can log in to comment below) if you have book suggestions, opinions on this month's book, or any other ideas for the Book Club.

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