Italian Shoes

Italian Shoes

[a Novel]

Book - 2009
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The bestselling author of the Kurt Wallander series delivers a ?short, beautiful, and ultimately life-affirming novel? about the path to self-acceptance ( Booklist ).

From the prize-winning ?master of atmosphere? comes the surprising and affecting story of a man well past middle age who suddenly finds himself on the threshold of renewal ( The Boston Globe ).

Living on a tiny island that is surrounded by ice during the long winter months, Fredrik Welin is so lost to the world that he cuts a hole in the ice every morning and lowers himself into the freezing water to remind himself that he is alive. Haunted by memories of the terrible mistake that drove him to this island and away from a successful career as a surgeon, he lives in a stasis so complete that an anthill grows undisturbed in his living room.

When an unexpected visitor disrupts this frigid existence, Frederik begins an eccentric, elegiac journey?one that displays the full height of Henning Mankell?s storytelling powers. A deeply human tale of loss and redemption, Italian Shoes is ?a voyage into the soul of a man? expertly crafted with ?snares that Mankell has hidden with a hunter?s skill inside this spectral landscape? ( The Guardian ).

?Beautiful.? ? The Boston Globe

?A fine meditation on love and loss.? ? The Sunday Telegraph

?Intense and precisely detailed. . . . A hopeful account of a man released from self-imposed withdrawal.? ? The Independent

?The creator of police detective Kurt Wallander presents a tale of mortal reckoning in which all the deaths are natural but none the less powerful.? ? Kirkus Reviews
Publisher: New York : New Press : Distributed by Perseus Distribution, c2009
ISBN: 9781595584366
Characteristics: 247 p. ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Thompson, Laurie 1938-


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FW_librarian Nov 05, 2014

This could be just my opionion, but it seems that most Americans like their movies and books to include lots of action and adventure as opposed to European and South American books and movies (those translated into English or have English subtitles, anyway) which center around self-reflection and observing others' behavior. Italian Shoes, translated from Swedish, is beautifully written about one man's self-imposed isolation and his forced return into relating with people. Facing his fears is painful (almost dramatic) but, necessary for filling an obvious void.

WVMLStaffPicks Sep 19, 2014

'I always feel more lonely when it's cold'. And it's cold a lot of the time on the isolated island in Sweden to which the protaganist has retreated in a self-imposed exile. But one day, a figure from the past appears on the ice, and everything changes in this compassionate novel of redemption and renewal.

aisha65 Sep 17, 2014

Henning Mankell has become one of my favorite authors. This book was not one of the Wallender series, but very enjoyable.

multcolib_susannel Jun 22, 2014

Living on an island entirely surrounded by ice during the long winter months, Fredrik Welin is so lost to the world that he cuts a hole in the ice every morning and lowers himself in to remember that he is alive. Haunted by memories of a horrible mistake he made as a surgeon, he lives completely isolated from every human emotion. One day he looks up and sees in the distance, a woman moving towards him using a walker.
The great strength of Mankell's writing is that he feeds the reader information bit by bit and creates characters as real as if they stepped off the street and started talking to you.

Aug 02, 2012

Set on a Swedish archipeligo where a man withdraws after a medical mistake. People from his past restore him to life.


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