Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell

Faceless Killers

It was a senselessly violent crime: on a cold night in a remote Swedish farmhouse an elderly farmer is bludgeoned to death, and his wife is left to die with a noose around her neck. And as if this didn’t present enough problems for the Ystad police Inspector Kurt Wallander, the dying woman’s last word is foreign, leaving the police the one tangible clue they have–and in the process, the match that could inflame Sweden’s already smoldering anti-immigrant sentiments. 

Unlike the situation with his ex-wife, his estranged daughter, or the beautiful but married young prosecutor who has piqued his interest, in this case, Wallander finds a problem he can handle. He quickly becomes obsessed with solving the crime before the already tense situation explodes, but soon comes to realize that it will require all his reserves of energy and dedication to solve.

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I was in my local bookstore when Faceless Killers jumped out at me. I read the back of the book and it sounded very interesting, why would a killer target an older farming couple? There must be something more to this story!

I have to admit that I wasn’t a big fan of the lead character, Kurt Wallander. He is down in the dumps since his wife has left him and his daughter wants nothing to do with him. He is also having problems with his father, but Kurt still has time to go after married women. *Eye roll* I have found that I am not a fan of “damaged” police detective, who seem to believe that the rules don’t apply to them. As other reviewers have noted, there wasn’t much character depth or development.

I enjoyed the mystery and wasn’t sure how the novel was going to end. I was puzzled by the woman’s last word of “Foreign” and didn’t know how it was going to play into solving the murder. I wasn’t a huge fan of the ending and thought to myself at the end “oh that’s it?”.

3 calculators out of a potential 5. Not my favourite mystery, but it was still puzzling on who the murderer was and the motive behind it. Shows that you can never know who your neighbours are!


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30 thoughts on “Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell

  1. I never read any of the books, but i’ve seen the series based on them. Don’t remember exactly which stories they did, but the guy, Wallander was all right in the TV version as far as i recall.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Nice review. I think your score is very just and I have a similar opinion. The ending was underwhelming. I was also a bit surprised that there were two mysteries there for the price of one. I got so excited about the solving of the first murder that I was disappointed that half the book was not about that at all.

    Liked by 1 person

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