Book Beginnings & The Friday 56: The Dogs of Riga by Henning Mankell

Every Friday Book Beginnings on Friday is hosted by Gillion at Rose City Reader where you can share the first sentence (or so) of the book you are reading, along with your initial thoughts about the sentence, impressions of the book, or anything else the opener inspires.

i’m still reading Hilary Mantel’s The Mirror and the Light and am stuck in the middle of the book where the narrative is so slow as Cromwell reminisces about his childhood and early adult years. I’m also reading The Count of Monte Cristo, such a long book, but it is moving along swiftly and although it’s a bit confusing with all the aliases that Dantès uses I think I’ve now got them straight in my head, and I’m really enjoying it.

But it’s time I started something new – so I picked a book at random off my bookshelves and began reading The Dogs of Riga by Henning Mankell, the second book in his Kurt Wallander series.

The Book Begins:

It started snowing shortly after 10am.

The man in the wheelhouse of the fishing boat cursed. He’d heard the forecast, but hoped they might make the Swedish coast before the storm hit.

Also every Friday there is The Friday 56, hosted by Freda at Freda’s Voice. *Grab a book, any book. *Turn to Page 56 or 56% on your  ereader . If you have to improvise, that is okay. *Find a snippet, short and sweet, but no spoilers!

These are the rules:

  1. Grab a book, any book.
  2. Turn to page 56, or 56% on your eReader. If you have to improvise, that is okay.
  3. Find any sentence (or a few, just don’t spoil it) that grabs you.
  4. Post it.
  5. Add the URL to your post in the link on Freda’s most recent Friday 56 post.

Page 56:

‘Bjork grabbed hold of the newspaper again and read aloud, “‘Soviet death patrols. The new Europe has exposed Sweden to crime with a political slant.’ What do they mean by that? Can anyone explain? Wallander?’

Summary:

Sweden, winter, 1991. Inspector Kurt Wallander and his team receive an anonymous tip-off. A few days later a life raft is washed up on a beach. In it are two men, dressed in expensive suits, shot dead.

The dead men were criminals, victims of what seems to have been a gangland hit. But what appears to be an open-and-shut case soon takes on a far more sinister aspect. Wallander travels across the Baltic Sea, to Riga in Latvia, where he is plunged into a frozen, alien world of police surveillance, scarcely veiled threats, and lies.

Doomed always to be one step behind the shadowy figures he pursues, only Wallander’s obstinate desire to see that justice is done brings the truth to light.

I read the first Wallander book, Faceless Killers several years ago and have been wanting to read more, so this book was a lucky random pick from my bookshelves this morning.

What have you been reading lately?

New-to-Me Books from Barter Books

Yesterday I went to my favourite bookshop Barter Books, one of the largest secondhand bookshops in Britain. This is where you can ‘swap’ books for credit that you can then use to get more books from the Barter Books shelves.

These are the books I brought home:

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A Killing of Angels by Kate Rhodes (a new-to-me author) – the second book in her Alice Quentin series. I haven’t read the first book but I thought this looks good – it’s a psychological thriller. At the height of a summer heatwave, a killer stalks the City of London.The avenging angel leaves behind a scattering of feathers with each body – but why these victims? What were their sins?

Winter Garden by Beryl Bainbridge – described on the back cover as ‘surreal’ (TLS) and ‘very funny as well as a frightening book’ (Guardian), I’m not sure what I’ll make of this book about a womaniser who begins an extra-marital affair, but I’ve liked other books by Beryl Bainbridge.

The Dogs of Riga by Henning Mankell. I’ve enjoyed a couple of his books before, so this Inspector Wallander book caught my eye. A little raft is washed ashore on a beach in Sweden. It contains two men, shot dead. They’re identified as criminals, victims of a gangland hit. Wallander’s investigation takes him to Latvia.

The Widow’s War by Sally Gunning – another new-to-me author. This is historical fiction set in 1761 about a whaler’s wife in the Cape Cod village of Satucket in Massachusetts, living with the daily uncertainty that her husband Edward will simply not return. And when her worst fear is realised, she finds herself doubly cursed.

Have you read any of these? Do they tempt you too?