1944: Daniel, a soldier, legendary among the Norwegians fighting the advance of Bolshevism on the Russian front, is killed. Two years later, a wounded soldier wakes up in a Vienna hospital. He becomes involved with a young nurse, the consequences of which will ripple forward to the turn of the next century.
1999: Harry Hole, alone again after having caused an embarrassment in the line of duty, has been promoted to inspector and is lumbered with surveillance duties. He is assigned the task of monitoring neo-Nazi activities; fairly mundane until a report of a rare and unusual gun being fired sparks his interest. Ellen Gjelten, his partner, makes a startling discovery. Then a former soldier is found with his throat cut. In a quest that takes him to South Africa and Vienna, Harry finds himself perpetually one step behind the killer. He will be both winner and loser by the novel’s nail-biting conclusion.
The Redbreast won the Glass Key prize for the best Nordic crime novel when it was first published, and was subsequently voted Norway’s best crime novel. The Devil’s Star, Nesbø’s first novel featuring Harry Hole to be translated into English, marked Nesbø as a writer to watch in the ever more fashionable world of Nordic crime.
Norwegian born Jo Nesbo is multi-talented. He was born in Oslo in 1960, growing up in Molde. He received his degree in Economics and Business Administration from the Norwegian School of Economics. He played football and had aspirations of playing professionally, but a serious knee injury destroyed those dreams. He served in the military, then formed a band called Di derre (Them There), who topped the charts in Norway. He kept his number crunching job during the day and his band performed at night.
The band was popular enough for a publisher to ask Nesbo to write a memoir about his life on the road with a band. For some reason, he instead came up with his first plot for what became his signature series with Inspector Harry Hole. The Bat was his first novel in that series.
So, you have a writer, musician, and economic analyst selling more than 3 million copies of his novels by 2014. Then, an astounding 33 million copies worldwide by 2017....... that is some impressive number crunching.
Nesbo has had one children's book (English translation) Doctor Proctor's Fart Powder, and also had one of his novels (Hodejegerne) made into a film, Headhunters.
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