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Book Review – Before The Frost: A Linda Wallander Mystery by Henning Mankell

November 19, 2011 Leave a comment

Book Description:

Linda Wallander is bored. Just graduated from the police academy, she is waiting to start work at the Ystad police station and move into her own apartment. Meanwhile, she’s living with her father and, like fathers and daughters everywhere, they are driving each other crazy. Nor will they be able to escape each other when she moves out. Her father is Inspector Kurt Wallander, a veteran of the Ystad police force, whom she will have to work alongside.

Linda’s boredom doesn’t last long. Soon she is embroiled in the case of her childhood friend, Anna, who has inexplicably disappeared. As the investigation proceeds, she makes a few rookie mistakes. They are understandable, but they are also life-threatening. And as the case her father is working on dovetails with her own, something far more calculated and dangerous than either could have imagined begins to emerge.

Already an international bestseller, Before the Frost inaugurates Henning Mankell’s new mystery series about Linda Wallander, and features Stefan Lindman of The Return of the Dancing Master.

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As a reader of the Kurt Wallander mysteries, I’ve been privy to Kurt’s daughter Linda’s awkward growing up years. From being the angst-filled rebellious teenager who left home as soon as she could, to all the aimless years afterwards just drifting along – traveling or “acting” or learning to build furniture – until in the book Firewall, Linda finally decided what to do with the rest of her life (i.e. be a policeman like dad). I was under the impression after Firewall that Linda had finally developed some maturity, but damn, Before The Frost: A Linda Wallander Mystery sure showed me differently! Henning Mankell couldn’t have written a more unlikable character if he’d tried – and then some.

Lord help Linda’s future colleagues because she sure is one spoilt diva of a police cadet – from accusing her dad of not pulling enough strings so she could start working early at the Ystad station, to having temper tantrums like a three-year-old at 30 years of age (i.e. hitting her dad in the face with an ash tray!)  I hated her entitled insecure ass so, so much – it was a total chore to finish the book. I wanted to chuck it, but there’s just one book left in the series and I’m a completest at heart. It’s a good thing there’s just one Linda Wallander Mystery (thankfully, Henning Mankell went back to Kurt as the main character in the last book in the Wallander series) since I can’t imagine anyone going back for seconds with this character.

As for the plot – it just made no sense to me. I was trying to condense it neatly in some way, but it’s such a hot mess, really. There’s a bunch of animals which are found set on fire, there’s a dismembered murder victim, there’s a secret group of religious fundamentalists, and then, there’s Linda who (in between constantly losing her temper at her dad and falling in love for no discernible reason with a virtual stranger) has the good fortune of just stumbling onto one big clue after another (in as risky and stupid way as possible) in her solo search for her missing(?) childhood friend Anna. It’s all very melodramatic and quite unrealistic, and have I mentioned already how odious I found Linda to be? 😉

I know Henning Mankell is a better writer than this, so I’ll just dust this off as an experiment that failed and I’ll be expecting more with the Kurt Wallander mysteries finale The Troubled Man.

Before The Frost: A Linda Wallander Mystery by Henning Mankell is available on Amazon as a Kindle edition, Paperback edition and Audible Audio Edition. * Also available in Amazon UK

The eBook is also available at Barnes & Noble, Kobo books, Sony ebookstore and the Apple iBookstore.


For a second opinion – here’s some reviews of Before The Frost by other bloggers:


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NOOK Daily Find! Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg for $2.99!!

November 19, 2011 1 comment

Well… Barnes & Noble has a new promo — the NOOK Daily Find: Today’s Great Book at a Great Price! So, Nook owners need not be envious of those with Kindles! 😉

And the new deal is…

Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program‘ by Sharon Salzberg (Workman Publishing Company) is now available at the specially discounted price of $2.99 on the B&N Nookbooks site. Hopefully, Amazon will price-match!

Book Description

Presented by Sharon Salzberg, one of the world’s foremost meditation experts, here’s a 28-day program to help you use meditation to sharpens focus, lower blood pressure, relieve chronic pain, reduce stress, and, perhaps most importantly, experience greater calm in your life

Thousands of years prove it, and Western science backs it: Meditation sharpens focus. Meditation lowers blood pressure, relieves chronic pain, reduces stress. Meditation helps us experience greater calm. Meditation connects us to our inner-most feelings and challenges our habits of self-judgment. Meditation helps protect the brain against aging and improves our capacity for learning new things. Meditation opens the door to real and accessible happiness.

There is no better person to show a beginner how to harness the power of meditation than Sharon Salzberg, one of the world’s foremost meditation teachers and spiritual authors. Cofounder of the Insight Meditation Society, author of Loving kindness, Faith, and other books, Ms. Salzberg distills 30 years of teaching meditation into a 28-day program that will change lives. It is not about Buddhism, it’s not esoteric—it is closer to an exercise, like running or riding a bike. From the basics of posture, breathing, and the daily schedule to the finer points of calming the mind, distraction, dealing with specific problem areas (pain in the legs? falling asleep?) to the larger issues of compassion and awareness, Real Happiness is a complete guide. It explains how meditation works; why a daily meditation practice results in more resiliency, creativity, peace, clarity, and balance; and gives twelve meditation practices, including mindfulness meditation and walking meditation. An extensive selection of her students’ FAQs cover the most frequent concerns of beginners who meditate—“Is meditation selfish?” “How do I know if I’m doing it right?” “Can I use meditation to manage weight?”

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New App for the Kindle – Timothy Parkers 30 Bible Crossword Games Volume 1: Easy (A Crossword Puzzle for Kindle)

November 19, 2011 Leave a comment

Here’s a new game app for the Kindle!

Timothy Parkers 30 Bible Crossword Games Volume 1: Easy (A Crossword Puzzle for Kindle)‘ by by Premier Digital Publishing is available on the Amazon Kindle site for $1.99! Just click here to download!

Game Description

Timothy Parker’s 30 Bible Crossword Games Volume 1: Easy is great fun from the “World’s Most Syndicated Puzzle Creator”.

These clever, hand-crafted puzzles give adult crossword solvers the chance to learn the Word of God and have fun at the same time. That’s the idea behind Tim Parker’s Bible Crosswords.

Timothy Parker’s 30 Bible Crosswords app is built to enhance the typical puzzle experience and deliver hours of spiritual crossword fun. Scriptural clues lead to biblical answers in these professional, perfectly symmetrical puzzles which follow standard crossword rules. If you get stumped, reading the Bible is a perfectly acceptable reference book.

Features include: Timothy Parker’s special scoring and ranking system, dynamic viewing of puzzle clues, auto-save puzzle progress, quick-start entry into your last unfinished puzzle, and lots more.

Play this collection of puzzles, and enjoy both a puzzle and spiritual game experience. Remember that using a reference book when stumped, is not only acceptable but encouraged!

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Be sure to check out Amazon’s Popular Kindle Games & Active Content page for a review of the top games available! And if you want to see the apps as a bestseller list, check out the Bestsellers in Kindle Games & Active Content!

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