I love books!
This is one of those series where you first listen to the author, like the story, and realize you are starting somewhere in the middle. I've listened to all of them since that first one and enjoyed them all immensely but then audible releases the original first book. I decided I had to try it to see what I could learn of Harry Hole's beginnings. Often times authors get better with time. "The Bat" started kind of slowly but from the time Harry went on a bender and still thinking through the case while there, the book too off and the Nesbo I've learned to be a great fan of was right there. I do wonder why he picked Australia as the setting for his first Hole novel as all the other ones I've listened to were set in Norway. Harry has his demons for sure but you feel empathy as he unravels the mystery. Can't wait for the next one!
Say something about yourself!
I've listened to all of the other Nesbo books and had been curious about the first one since there have been so many references to the serial killer Harry caught in Australia. Nesbo must have gotten better as he wrote more books. This book was was filled with interesting Aboriginal legends but they didn't really apply to the story. The story wasn't believable. There were too many flashbacks to his previous relationship. The reader was ok, but not red hot. He doesn't do a very believable "drunk". All in all, I was sorry I bought this one and I love that Audible lets me return books I don't like.
The story was modern and approached in quite a different way.
Any Robotham novel. The stories unfolds in the same way.
He is one of the best in the business!!!!!
Harry returning to alcohol.
I work in IT, I love reading, I love Writing and for those daily travels too and fro I love to listen to Audible books too
As an Australian I was amazed with the depth of knowledge shown of Australian, if not Aboriginal history, dream time stories, Australian history that made this story shine out, especially when written by a Norwegian. Well Done. How the author wove in each chapter title to the story, and kept me listening was great.
Harry of course, a damaged star.
Very good, voices not so bad but still very good.
Intrepid, determined, out of his zone and drunk, the killer never had a chance
A great story, it has now made me want the rest, in fact number 3 is already purchased. A gripe, why is number 2 not available? But a minor gripe as time will I hope bring it to me. I really want to listen to more, especially with this writer and performer collaboration.
Lover of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, mystery, and westerns in all media, including old-time radio dramatizations.
The Harry Hole character reminds me a little of Jesse Stone. He's definitely not your squeaky-clean hero. This series was recommended to me by someone who saw that I enjoyed Stieg Larsson's "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and its sequels, and I'm grateful that he did. The summary is that it was worth the credit, but I'm not yet hooked and pining for the next book. I've purchased the next available audio book, number 3 in the series. We'll see how it goes. If I don't get a little more out of it, Harry may have to go on the shelf for a while.
Keep in mind, when reading my opinions, that darkish detective fiction is not really my thing, so I don't have a lot to compare Nesbo's work. I thought it was solid believable fiction, and, like Larsson's, very well translated. It felt like it was written for native english speakers. In a number of parts, I was amazed see that the humor translates well. Someone did a great job. Sean Barrett's performance of the various accents was very good, but the voice of Harry never quite fit the character for me. Other reviewers have stated a preference for another reader as Harry, but as this is my first in the series, I can't say. Sometimes, when the reader of a series changes, the new one doesn't get a fair chance. We (fans) like of character's voices to stay the same.
If you like the genre, give Harry a spin. You won't regret the credit, and may get to really like him.
It's a crime story with a victim/s and "who-did-it" but as such it is 95 % perfect. Sean Barrett does a great job narrating.
I love the Harry Hole series and was pleased to see the first in the series finally available. This story isn't as macabre as the other Harry Hole books, but it provides glimpses into Harry's life before he becomes completely jaded. Worth the listen for Nesbo fans.
I prefer the latter books but was glad I read this one.
All the Australian accents were spot on.
Definitely written as a part of a series.
I missed the voice of Robin Sachs, Sean Baarett's voice took something away from the book.
The twist and turns of the mystery.
Ph.D. Psychologist and Coach
I loved hearing the backstory of Harry Hole after reading all of the later books. The narrator was an unfortunate choice because most of the characters are Australian and he can only occasionally provide a sentence or two of a passable Aussie accent. This weakness detracted from the listening experience to the point I wished I'd read instead of listened to the novel. The plot is engaging, with lots of fun twists, although it falls apart a bit at the end. The romance is a nice plot line as well -- but has many weaknesses towards the end of the book. Nesbo does a great job explaining and showing sides of Australia and the tales told in the book are delightful.
Great storytelling and perhaps the most complex protagonist since Sherlock himself. Nesbo's Hole, however you pronounce it, sees all even through the tragic alcohol haze he inevitably falls prey to. The plot is never predictable, the characters are never one dimensional and the writing is crisp and with the right balance of humour and gritty reality.
Obviously the rest of the Hole thrillers, without being as formulaic as most of the successful writers of the genre. But I like the comparison to Martin Cruz Smith's Arkady Renko. Both protagonists persevere despite corruption, incompetence and fatal character flaws.
It was hard at first to listen without the bass, sober voice of the perfectly matched Robin Sachs. He seems to bring a little more gravitas to the characterization. But Sean Barrett is on my top five narrator's list, and with his ability with accents, was able to bring out the personalities of the secondary players, particularly the Aborigines. So that after the first few chapters, it mattered not a wit.
The great white Harry ...down under.
What a pleasant surprise so soon after the release of The Phantom. I hope the plan is to bring all of Nesbo's work to audioland, there is no one better out there. Keep them coming, but make sure it is Sachs or Barrett doing the storytelling.