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Bettie's Books

A Stuga On the Cusp of the Orust Riviera, tucked away next to a hobbit hole in the woods.

Depths

Depths - Henning Mankell

bookshelves: seven-seas, wwi, war, published-2005, boo-scary, historical-fiction, lifestyles-deathstyles, psychology, revenge, serial-killer, spies

Read in September, 2009

 

** spoiler alert ** Moody and menacing.

Over the last few years we have gotten used to autistic/psychopaths/sociopaths being wholly depicted as 'aaw shucks' cute. Take Dexter as an example (and the same is happening in vampiric literature too) where we are spoonfed, well, a spoonful of sugar really.

Here we have an author trying on a theme for size and plummeting it's depths(hee) in a character who is an amalgam of teh darkness of spirit, elitism, fractured mind and no benchmark for moral judgement etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. Depths A Novel is more along the Patricia Highsmith mode of chiller/thriller as so neatly shown in the Ripley character but she did give us some light moments of reprieve to gather our nerves and Henning Mankell, most certainly, does not.

The Lars Tobiasson-Svartman story is so slow in it's brewing that many readers who want a 'quick fix and on to the next' will not relish the care that has been taken to sculpt this dark and unredeeming persona and it shows in the reviews here on GR.

Oh and one last thing that caught my attention: in the initial Dexter book the protagonist states that folk dislike him on sight and they don't know why they do but Dexter understands he makes them feel uncomfortable and that their skin bristles accordingly. Its the same reaction that folk have with Lars but he fails to understand why people should react so - he is hurt when they behave in such a fashion and exacts revenge for the impudence.



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