Henning Mankell – The Dogs Of Riga

When two frozen dead bodies float ashore in a liferaft, Kurt Wallander finds himself caught up in a mystery that stretches to the other side of the Baltic Sea. While on loan to the Latvian police in Riga, he is approached by a secretive underground organization who want his support in tracking down the murderer of one of their friends, himself a police officer. Mankell wrote this novel in 1992, when the immediate effects of German reunification were still rippling dangerously through Eastern Europe. The Latvian society he draws is one filled with fear, repressed pride, and enormous uncertainty over its future. In many ways The Dogs Of Riga comes across as more of an spy thriller than a crime novel. It’s an interesting change of pace, and a very worthwhile read.