This last appearance by Kurt Wallander was first published many years ago by a Dutch publisher who used it as a promotion to sell crime books. It really is a long short story, and chronologically it dates to just before “The Troubled Man,” the final novel in the Wallander series. So, this is really good-bye to Kurt.
Always desirous of purchasing a house, leaving his apartment and obtaining a dog, Wallander is induced by his friend and co-worker Martinson to look at a property owned by an aged relative. Upon inspection, he decides it meets his needs and even agrees to a price. But then, walking around the garden Wallander finds a bony hand sticking up from the ground. Further investigation turns up a complete skeleton, and later a second. So his desire to purchase the home is very much cooled, but the investigation heats up and we have a Wallander investigation with few leads.
The author writes in an Afterward that he decided to end the series on a high note, having said everything he wanted to say, and not drag it on merely for the sake of continuing it. That doesn’t mean we won’t all miss the irascible Swedish detective, because we will. But at least we enoyed him for a long run.