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It is not easy to summarize the protagonist of the series in a few words, but here are some features of Harry’s personality that are important to me when I write about him: he’s the type of guy who is driven by his good side as well as his darker side. At times he believes in his role as law enforcer, at other times he doesn’t. And occasionally he is so gripped by his emotions that they overwhelm his basic belief in the principles of a state governed by law. He hunts down criminals with such an intense hatred and finds revenge so hard to resist that at times he could be mistaken for the antagonists he is fighting. But at the same time he can feel empathy for, perhaps even a kinship with, the lawbreaker. Harry Hole is a hero with pronounced weaknesses. All interesting heroes have an Achilles heel, and in Harry’s case, it is alcohol.
Harry feels something akin to what the serial killer feels, the same tension and excitement, when he approaches a victim and the same anti-climax after the killer is caught. It is Harry’s ambition to understand both love and evil. He is a passionate guy in all ways. And he is the type of man who has difficulties controlling his impulses. The fact that he cannot set limits permeates his drinking habits and his attitude to his job. He takes on cases and is swallowed up by them. It is the same with his relationships with women. I could have chosen to make Harry and Rakel live happily ever after and have children, but then we have a completely different person. I like the fact that he is in transit in his own life, as far as his emotions and his job are concerned. I'm often asked how much Harry and I have in common. I won't answer that in detail, but when you make a person a hero, as a writer you are bound to have at least a basic set of values, a goal, a need or a longing that you can relate to.
Nesbo delivers another intriguing Harry Hole story. It seems the story telling has gotten better with each entry and this one is a real page turner. Couldn't put it down. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Kathleen Muniz
I have been reading Jo Nesbo and particularly Harry Hole series since the beginning. I can'treally say which one is the best but this one is definitely on the top for me. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Hana Bartakova
Jo Nesbo is a brilliant writer ! And Harry Hole a great character ... I am addicted !Published 16 days ago by Georgia Michaelides
Phantom by Jo Nesbø became one of my favorite books on the life and career of Harry Hole even as I was reading it and yet I almost missed it. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Nancy Brisson