/ 30 January 2014

‘Wallander’ author Mankell to document cancer battle

Crime writer Henning Mankell.
Crime writer Henning Mankell.

Wallander writer Henning Mankell has revealed that he has cancer and intends to document his battle with the disease in a newspaper column.

The Swedish author, whose hit novels were made into several TV series, has revealed that his condition is serious, with tumours in his lung, neck and possibly elsewhere.

Writing in Sweden's Goteborgs-Posten newspaper, the crime writer said tumours had been found in his lung and neck early this year, and that his doctors feared the disease had already spread elsewhere.

"Very early I decided to try to write about this, because it is ultimately about the pain and suffering that afflicts so many people," he wrote.

The 65-year-old author and playwright described how he had gone to visit his orthopaedic surgeon in Stockholm in the new year believing he had a slipped disc. "When I came back to Gothenburg the next day I did it with a serious cancer diagnosis," he wrote. "I have no particular memories of the trip home, except for the indelible gratitude I feel for Eva Bergman, my wife, who was with me."

He said that now, two weeks later, he was close to starting treatment. "I have decided to write it just as it is, about the difficult battle it always is," he wrote. "But I will write from life's perspective, not death's."

Mankell is famous in the English-speaking world for his 12 detective novels featuring the detective Kurt Wallander, made into a TV series and played by the actor Kenneth Branagh in a British television adaptation. In his native Sweden, he is also known as a playwright and leftwing activist. – guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media 2013​