Monday, April 20, 2009

The Great Henning Steps Out

Italian Shoes
by Henning Mankell

One of my top five favorite authors,best known for his detective stories featuring the Swedish Inspector Wallander. BTW, they have all been translated from the Swedish and well worth the read.

In Italian Shoes a lost soul has exiled himself to a self imposed prison on his tiny family island in the Swedish archipelago, living out his meager existence with his dog, cat, the anthill in his living room, and the occasional visit from the island mailman. A surgeon who made a grievous mistake he has given up on life as repentance, but one winter morning that all changes when a lone woman appears just off shore standing on the ice.

This is a story of a man reborn, redemptive love, and the possibility of making something ugly beautiful. To me, and I could be way off base here, the Shoes represent something perfect made by an imperfect man. it just takes time and patience. What once was dead (the leather) has now been made better for the experience.

Anyways, if you are looking for a short standalone book to get a taste of Mr. Mankell's writing style (without the violent homicides), than this is a great place to start. Be aware that the ending is "messy". By that I mean the conclusion is left up to you the reader.

Henning Mankell is a Swedish author who gained bestseller stardom with his series of crime novels featuring inspector Kurt Wallander.
Internationally acclaimed author Henning Mankell has written numerous Kurt Wallander mysteries. The books have been published in 33 countries and consistently top the bestseller lists in Europe, receiving major literary prizes and generating numerous international film and television adaptations.


Nessa said...

Sorry, but the only Italian shoes that I will pay attention to are the ones that I can WEAR!

TStevens said...

I am pretty sure his books are translated into Italian; and with some creative use of Duct Tape you can wear them as shoes. All about solutions

Faith Snater said...

I just finished reading this about an hour ago. Thanks for recommending Mankel; he's a pretty amazing author!