Italian Shoes - Henning Mankell
Mankell writes a variety of stories and has himself a resident crime series with a chap called Kurt as his protagonist. This is not one of these books. Italian Shoes is about Fredrick, a doctor who lives in self composed exile on an island in the Swedish archipelago. He has sent himself there for a life a solitude because one day as surgeon he made a big mistake. At this point he thought it was a good idea to take himself out of circulation for the safety of others. However, we all know he did it because he is not great at facing up to himself and his feelings etc. Anyway, his ex love Harriet turns up on a walking frame, she is dying, and helps him confront or reconnect with his life. No more details from me as the revelations are more enjoyable if you read them as you go. It is written in the first person, at a perfect pace with the spare but descriptive writing of a confident and well respected writer. Beautifully written. I love books set in cold place and islands so this is all just perfect for me. Being a person who craves warmth and company I am not sure why I love these kinds of books but I just do.