From the New York Times–bestselling author of the Kurt Wallander novels: An “absorbing” and “chilling” historical mystery “dripping with evil atmosphere” (The Times, London).
December 12, 1945. The Third Reich lies in ruins as a British warplane lands in Bückeburg, Germany. A man carrying a small black bag quickly disembarks and travels to Hamelin, where he disappears behind the prison gates. Early the next day, England’s most experienced hangman executes twelve war criminals.
Fifty-four years later, retired policeman Herbert Molin is found brutally slaughtered on his remote farm in Härjedalen, Sweden. The police discover strange tracks in the blood on the floor . . . as if someone had been practicing the tango.
Stefan Lindman is a young police officer who has just been diagnosed with cancer of the tongue. When he reads about the murder of his former colleague, he decides to travel north and find out what happened. Soon he is enmeshed in a puzzling investigation with no witnesses and no discernible motives. Terrified of the illness that could take his life, Lindman becomes more and more reckless as he uncovers the links between Molin’s death, World War II, and an underground neo-Nazi network. Mankell’s impeccably researched historical thriller is “a worthy successor to the Wallander whodunits” (The Sunday Telegraph).
“[Mankell] never fails to find a deep vein of humanity within the perpetually furrowed brows of his troubled cops.” —Booklist