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The Son: A Novel | [Jo Nesbø]

The Son: A Novel

Sonny Lofthus is a strangely charismatic and complacent young man. Sonny’s been in prison for a dozen years, nearly half his life. The inmates who seek out his uncanny abilities to soothe leave his cell feeling absolved. They don’t know or care that Sonny has a serious heroin habit - or where or how he gets his uninterrupted supply of the drug. Or that he’s serving time for other peoples’ crimes. Sonny took the first steps toward addiction when his father took his own life rather than face exposure as a corrupt cop. Now Sonny is the seemingly malleable center of a whole infrastructure of corruption....
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Publisher's Summary

The author of the best-selling Harry Hole series now gives us an electrifying stand-alone novel set inside Oslo’s maze of especially venal, high-level corruption.

Sonny Lofthus is a strangely charismatic and complacent young man. Sonny’s been in prison for a dozen years, nearly half his life. The inmates who seek out his uncanny abilities to soothe leave his cell feeling absolved. They don’t know or care that Sonny has a serious heroin habit - or where or how he gets his uninterrupted supply of the drug. Or that he’s serving time for other peoples’ crimes.

Sonny took the first steps toward addiction when his father took his own life rather than face exposure as a corrupt cop. Now Sonny is the seemingly malleable center of a whole infrastructure of corruption: prison staff, police, lawyers, a desperate priest - all of them focused on keeping him high and in jail. And all of them under the thumb of the Twin, Oslo’s crime overlord. As long as Sonny gets his dope, he’s happy to play the criminal and the prison’s in-house savior.

But when he learns a stunning, long-hidden secret concerning his father, he makes a brilliantly executed escape from prison - and from the person he’d let himself become - and begins hunting down those responsible for the crimes against him.... The darkly looming question is: Who will get to him first - the criminals or the cops?

©2014 Jo Nesbø (P)2014 Random House Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (362 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Mary WACO, TX, United States 05-19-14
    Mary WACO, TX, United States 05-19-14 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Much more than I expected!"

    I am a Harry Hole fan, so I expected a good story. This was so much more.

    Built on the same format--police, criminals, an evil plot--but unexpected twists and turns with every page. Then the story became more about the people than the plot. Nesbo doesn't write 3-dimensional characters; he takes them even further.

    You will never guess the ending!

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 05-22-14
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 05-22-14 Member Since 2005

    Got to be with my too girls from Tx and Mt! All is right....

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Maybe The Best Mystery Novelist Anywhere"

    Any one following my reccomendations will know what a huge fan I am of Nesbo's Harry Hole series. That said I was a bit reticent to purchase this one based on some reviews and the publisher's summary. Fortunately I came accross Gail's review and she persuaded me to take the plunge.

    The beginning chapters, which are critical to understanding the mystery of the main character, were a bit tedious for me. I may have given up had it not been for my confidence in Nesbo's writing. Somewhere soon after the first few chapters, a remarkable sense of purpose reveals itself to the son as well as to the reader. As the story unravels so does the suspense. This is a fantastic story.

    The Son is a complex story of betrayal, shame, pennance, masterful revenge. It involves a great deal of great police work, with remarkable characters.

    Gildart Jackson does a great job with the narration.

    This is easily a five star book for me!

    13 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    danny lawrence Charlotte, NC USA 05-24-14
    danny lawrence Charlotte, NC USA 05-24-14 Member Since 2006

    Tell us about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Revenge and Forgiveness"

    The Son is in prison for two murders he didn't commit. After hearing information about his fathers murder, he escapes from prison to seek revenge upon the guilty. Simon is the detective on his trail, he knew Sonny's father many years back and doesn't want to see Sonny get hurt. The Twin is also looking for Sonny. He had an important part in the death/suicide of Sonnys father. All this comes together in another thrilling Jo Nesbo story.
    I thoroughly enjoyed listening to Gildart Jackson narrating this book. He touched on the tone of the story making it easy to listen to.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jim Boston, MA, United States 05-26-14
    Jim Boston, MA, United States 05-26-14 Member Since 2007
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    "Did NOT like this narrator"

    I really liked this story in the typically dark Scandinavian murder tradition, but the narrator was one of the most wooden readers I've ever listened to. In places it really ruined the story for me. I will avoid Gildart Jackson in the future.

    8 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B.J. Minneapolis, MN, United States 05-27-14
    B.J. Minneapolis, MN, United States 05-27-14 Member Since 2007

    I hear voices. But maybe that's because there's always an Audible book in my ear.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Another great book from this terrific writer."

    Jo Nesbø impresses me to no end. I love the Harry Hole series and didn't know what to expect with this one. I thought without Harry it would be second rate. I was SO wrong.

    This is simply an engaging mystery. Yes, again it's dark like his other books. But the characters are so engaging I could over look it. (Yes, they are implausible. That's why it's fiction.)

    There are plenty of reviews on this site with more detail about the book. I don't need to rehash it. What I can tell you is this: if you're a fan of authors like Dennis Lehane, Stieg Larsson, and Adrian McKinty then you need to give Nesbø a listen.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Radt Pasadena, CA, USA 05-21-14
    Jeff Radt Pasadena, CA, USA 05-21-14 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Best since The Snowman"

    The story is intricate and the characters finely drawn ... tension is not contrived. A really sublime crime thriller. This is Jo Nesbø at his best. I don't even miss Harry Hole.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gail Seattle, WA, United States 05-16-14
    Gail Seattle, WA, United States 05-16-14 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "WoW! Hole-y Transcends "Flawed Detective Formula""

    It took me awhile to realize (get) the thundering challenge Nesbø initially and so deftly hid within the usual 'flawed detective' ("FD") formula. Upon entering the world of this book and for quite a while thereafter, I thought it was worthwhile enough being there to stick around, but had to work through some initial disappointment that Nesbø wasn't yet again leading me into a darkly terrifying realm I could only endure by knowing I could escape then reenter, when renewed courage allowed, by simply closing the book or turning off the sound (i.e. Nesbø's "The Snowman"). Most all of these FD books surround the reader with sinners, saints, guilt, revenge, corruption, murder and/or inane mismanagement from the top, etc.; and I initially thought this book was riding this wave until something jigged and veered from the norm and I suddenly pictured myself at Pipeline in Hawaii grooving along thinking I'd soon be in the blue tunnel only to realize I had mis-"judged" everything and was falling off the lip to the exposed coral so faaaaaar below with that wall of water following to pound down, yikes...fortunately one can rewind an audio book and get a do-over. IMHO, Nesbø subtly challenges the readers mind to step out from just watching like a sheeple hating the evil and corruption to at least consider ...well, just when is unchallenged, ignored, too Big or Powerful to Jail, governmental, Criminal individual or gang, Corporate, Banker/Broker evil-doer harm enough for citizens to say enough is enough! If the appropriate powers ignore and will not implement "justice", when if ever should an individual or rise up and would they be justified in doing so? In the old days I watched for and applauded "Random acts of Kindness" ; now I am starting to applaud the few Random acts of civil disobedience I see reported more and more often...but I digress. You should like this book even if you just want to escape with a good book...no civil disobedience, or citizen revenge required. You will care deeply about many characters you meet, there are intelligent, plausible and surprising twists and shifts of viewpoints. I wish I could bet each reader $5 they will not guess the biggest surprise near the end...Brilliantly crafted...Bravo, Mr. Nesbø !

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    cristina Somerville, MA, United States 05-23-14
    cristina Somerville, MA, United States 05-23-14 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not his best, but still very, very good"

    It's hard to review Jo Nesbo novels. One tends to compare them against the author's previous work and it's hard to measure up. I did not think this was one of his best (it's not Snowman). Some of the plot twists are a bit too farfetched and there is never any good reason given for Sonny's ethereal qualities. (Did not really felt the novel needed him to be such an other-worldly guy...Simple goodness would have been just fine.) Still, the story moves with unrelenting pace and the mystery is a good one. Yes, I suspected how it would end sooner than I would have liked but I think that's simply because I am aware of Nesbo's tricks!

    If you have not read Nesbo before, try Snowman first. If you are a fan of Nesbo, by all means download The Son. And enjoy!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CDB CA, United States 06-16-14
    CDB CA, United States 06-16-14 Member Since 2008

    CDB

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved the Book-Hated the Narrator"
    What did you like best about The Son: A Novel? What did you like least?

    In true Nesbo style, there are enough twists and turns to keep you interested all the way through. However, this is a book best read on your Kindle as the narrator's voice drove me crazy. He has a very stilted reading style, stopping and starting on individual words, when you just want him to read in a normal voice. He also mixed up the voices of some of the characters so it was hard to tell who was saying what.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    The Son doesn't think like the average person, so you could not predict what he would do next most of the time.


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Gildart Jackson?

    Robin Sachs-as in so many of the Harry Hole novels by Jo Nesbo.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Yes


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charmaine D. Roth 07-21-14 Member Since 2010
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    "I don't like this narrator! Love Jo Nespo!"
    Where does The Son: A Novel rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I am a big Jo Nespo fan and am having great difficulty listening to this book because of the narrator. Stilted and choppy. If I wasn't such a fan I would stop listening! So far Jo Nespo does not disappoint but the narrator does!


    What didn’t you like about Gildart Jackson’s performance?

    Stilted and choppy, does not flow easily on the ear.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Still listening


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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