The Fifth Woman

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The Fifth Woman
First edition (Swedish)
Author Henning Mankell
Original title Den femte kvinnan
Translator Steven T. Murray
Country Sweden
Language Swedish
Series Kurt Wallander #6
Genre Crime novel
Publisher Ordfront
Publication date
Published in English
Media type Print (Hardcover, Paperback)
Pages 428 pp (Eng. hardback trans.)
ISBN ISBN 1-86046-854-3 (Eng. trans.)
OCLC 59544856
Preceded by Sidetracked
Followed by One Step Behind

The Fifth Woman (original: Den femte kvinnan; 1996) is a crime novel by Swedish author Henning Mankell, the sixth in his acclaimed Inspector Wallander series.


A sadistic serial killer has been preying on men, beginning with a retired car salesman whose interests appear to be limited to bird watching and poetry and whose body was discovered in a punji stick pit and a flower shop manager, found starved and garrotted in the woods. Wallander soon realises both men have a past record of violence towards women, and after another man is drowned in a lake, he goes on the hunt for an avenging angel...


In 2002, The Fifth Woman was adapted by Swedish public broadcaster Sveriges Television into a four-part television miniseries, starring Rolf Lassgård as Wallander. British broadcaster BBC commissioned a 90-minute adaptation for its Wallander television series starring Kenneth Branagh. The episode was broadcast in January 2010.