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Nemesis (A Harry Hole Novel) Hardcover – January 6, 2009
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Audio CD, Audiobook, Unabridged
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. When a bank teller is shot during a holdup at the start of Norwegian bestseller Nesbø's beautifully executed heist drama, Oslo Insp. Harry Hole investigates, along with Beate Lønn, a young detective with the ability to remember every face she's ever seen. Meanwhile, Harry receives a call from Anna Bethsen, a woman he hasn't seen in years. After he meets Anna, recovering alcoholic Harry awakens the next morning with a hangover and the news that Anna is dead, apparently by her own hand. While Harry quietly looks into Anna's death, he and Beate uncover ties in their bank robbery case to one of Norway's most notorious bank robbers, who's currently in prison. The deeper Harry digs, the clearer it becomes that Anna's death is linked to the robbery. Expertly weaving plot lines from Hole's last outing to feature the inspector, The Redbreast (2007), Nesbø delivers a lush crime saga that will leave U.S. readers clamoring for the next installment. (Jan.)
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*Starred Review* When Norwegian Jo Nesbo’s Redbreast landed on these shores in 2007, the acclaim was universal. Now Nesbo returns with another novel that is every bit the multitextured, complexly plotted, psychologically rich thriller that made Redbreast such an unqualified success. We pick up the life of Oslo detective Harry Hole, a recovering alcoholic whose closet is stuffed with unresolved issues concerning his obsession with his job and his inability to commit to a personal life, as he awaits the return of his new lover, Rakel, from Russia, where she hopes to be awarded permanent custody of her young son. But then he accepts an invitation to meet an old girlfriend, and suddenly he is sucked into the abyss all over again. Waking the next day at home with what appears to be a world-class hangover, he bemoans having fallen off the wagon, only to realize that’s merely the tip of the iceberg: the girlfriend has been found murdered, and his rival in the Oslo police department may be behind an attempt to frame him. Does the girlfriend’s death somehow tie in with the bank robbery and murder that he and his new partner are investigating? As Hole attempts to connect the sea of dots strewn in his path, he must battle not only his adversaries but his own demons, suddenly given new life. Nesbo manages the unlikely feat of exploring the inner life of his lead character in the thorough and compelling manner one associates with, say, Ruth Rendell, while at the same time juggling multiple, interlocking plot strands as dexterously as David Hewson. No doubt about it: Nesbo belongs on every crime-fiction fan’s A-list. --Bill Ott
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Top Customer Reviews
I clearly did everything the wrong way - but you know what? It simply did not matter. I read "The Snowman" first, learned about Harry Hole's life in the future, and then went back to his earlier life here in "Nemesis." NO PROBLEM! "Nemesis" starts off with an Oslo bank robbery gone bad resulting in a bank employee's execution. It is all caught on tape. Oslo detective Hole is brought in to work with the robbery team due to his homicide experience. The homicide team is led by Tom Waaler, really Hole's nemesis. Hole can't work well with others - he is just not wired that way. He lacks personal communication skills, is grumpy, and is an alcoholic. Ordinarily I like my heros to be good and my villians to be bad. Despite all of Harry Hole's flaws (which make him real and human), Harry is a hero you can root for. Harry is dealing with the death of his former police partner (and has an urgent need, desire, to investigate the crime but has not been given authority to do so by his superiors), and is dealing with the drama of events involving his girlfriend and her son (her ex is trying to get custody of the boy, and he has some nasty connections that will be hard to compete with). But despite all of the drama, Harry is an excellent detective and he knows how to do his job. Harry ends up working with Beate Lønn, a young female criminalist, who specializes in analyzing video and has the rare special talent of being able to remember every face she has ever seen. Together they are a very unusual and likable team.
To add to everything else that is going on, a personal side drama involving a short-lived relationship with a former girlfriend takes place that potentially will destroy Harry for good - working on the two crimes simultaneously (the bank robbery spree and the crime drama involving the former girlfriend), many twists and turns (including Beate Lønn's own side drama) and departmental drama - makes "Nemesis" a psychologically rich thriller that should satisfy most crime police procedural lovers including Larson fans.
I just bought "the Devil's Star" yesterday and started it reading it - I am 7% of the way through and am thoroughly enjoying it (going forward to the third in the series following "Nemesis" - then I will go back and read "the Redbreast").
All of them have been great reads. The beginnings have a lot of detail, but soon
the pieces fall together and the twists and turns of the story start and continue to the end.
All this time we are learning more about the people in the stories and their complexities.
Thanks Jo Nesbo for writing this entertaining series.
Joe Nesbo concludes the novel in his typical O. Henry - like fashion by providing the unexpected twist. He is a master at roping the reader into a false conclusion. He also sets the stage for a battle between Harry and a fellow member of the police force, known to the underworld as "The Prince."
I have read a few of Nesbos books and so far enjoyed them all. If you like gritty crime novels you will like this one.