It is 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.
In 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.
©2007 Jo Nesbo (P)2011 Random House Audio
This is one you almost need to listen to twice unless you are truly engrossed. It really comes together at the end with a surprise, but to appreciate that surprise, it helps to have a solid recollection of the rest of the book. I will listen to this again.
The Scandinavian authors can show American authors a thing or two. A wonderful story told with style. I did have a bit of problem keeping the Norwegian names straight, but that's me not the author. I'll be back for more Nesbo!
This was a very interesting story. Overall I completely enjoyed this book. But, that said, it was a little confusing. Going back and forth in time, and all the names to keep up with. I had to get onto Wiki to figure out who was who at one point, as I has lost the characters names. I don't often get lost in books in that way, I have been busy in my real life and maybe it was only hard because of life... but, again, it was a little confusing to listen to. I think I may have enjoyed reading it, as it's easier to follow names if you're reading them.
All this said, I love Harry Hole, he is a great character and Jo Nesbo's writing style is wonderful. This is the first Jo Nesbo book I have read and I am onto the rest. A really great story and a great storyteller.
Woman of a million books
Twisting, excellent plotting
The whole book is memorable because it is so different than the regular rubbish sold in airports across the nation. Jo Nesbo gives you a thought provoking plot with twists and turns that are completely unanticipated. You can't miss one page or you will loose the story. Excellent writing and a very complex storyline. I loved it and wished more authors, including myself were able to tie things together so well.
Americans will be shocked at how well this novel is written.
I don't know as I couldn't get through the first chapters describing the man with his lung cancer and all of his symptoms. Very upsetting as this is an issue that we are dealing with in real life.
Wish that there was a rating system for health things like there is for sex. That way I wouldn't have bothered to get this book.
Just wish authors could use some other illness than cancer for their sick characters.
took a long time to really connect where the plot was taking us
reader didn't really give a sense of "here's another person talking" -- voice inflection was just ok.
will want to try a different reader for future books
Gets the series off to a great start
Harry calling Ellen's "answer phone"
For the most part - I still have a bit of trouble with names and keeping characters straight. I wonder if some sort of web page or two could help with this...
The time with Oleg - and Rakel
I read this fourth - I would rank it #2 after "The Leapord"
I got this book because I loved the Snowman. This book is along the same lines, but not as interesting. I found my mind constantly wandering and I would have to go back and listen to parts again to keep on track. I finally made it thru the book. I have decide that Nesbo is not for me. This is an epic book, I wouldn't buy it again.
Avid book listener. I love anything James Lee Burke,John Sandford and Nelson Demille. Stephen King has entertained me recently.
Another good novel from Nesbo. Can be compared to The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.I have not read them in sequence but I love Harry more with each page. I don't normally reread books. There are too many out there.
Complex, believable plot with a lot of twists and turns.
After a slow start, it's very fast-paced.
He brought the characters to life
No, too involved, need a break to digest the plot
I particularly enjoyed learning about Norway's WW II history and the involvement of some of its citizens with the Nazis. Nesbo's writing puts the reader into the middle of the action and gives the story an immediacy not often achieved by authors.
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