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Publisher's Summary

Available in English at last! The first book in the remarkable, best-selling Harry Hole series from Jo Nesbø.

Before Harry took on the neo-Nazi gangs of Oslo, before he met Rakel, before The Snowman tried to take everything he held dear, he went to Australia. Harry Hole is sent to Sydney to investigate the murder of Inger Holter, a young Norwegian girl who was working in a bar. Initially sidelined as an outsider, Harry becomes central to the Australian police investigation when they start to notice a number of unsolved rape and murder cases around the country. The victims were usually young blondes. Inger had a number of admirers, each with his own share of secrets, but there is no obvious suspect and the pattern of the other crimes seems impossible to crack. Then a circus performer is brutally murdered, followed by yet another young woman. Harry is in a race against time to stop a highly intelligent killer who is bent on total destruction.

©2013 Jo Nesbø (P)2013 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

Advance praise from the U.K. for The Bat

“Even with this first book Nesbø’s command of the idiom is completely in place—there is absolutely no sense that the writer was finding his feet and aficionados will be very pleased to slide this on to their bookshelves alongside the other Harry Hole novels.” -- The Daily Express
 
“It is fantastic to see a younger Harry, a more loquacious Harry. . . . [Nesbø is] a terrific writer who knows how to build a story, taking you slowly to the top of a rollercoaster before sending you hurtling towards a solution that you never see coming.” -- Scottish Express
 
“Nesbø is already taking on the clichés, ruthlessly tearing them apart and coming up with new riffs. . . . Most satisfyingly, we can now see the organic shape that Nesbø always intended his work to take.” -- The Independent (London)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    523
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    320
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    100
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    55

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Story

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • ejb
  • usa
  • 03-23-18

Really, really bad.

What disappointed you about The Bat?

I had been thinking about starting this series for a few months and will not be continuing it. The story was dumb and boring, and the narrator's accents were cringeworthy. I would have given this zero stars if that were possible.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Insomnia by Stephen King

Would you be willing to try another one of John Lee’s performances?

Absolutely not.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Bat?

All of them; I can't believe someone agreed to publish this trash.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Loved it!

This kept me captivated the entire time. Excellent narrator, a great story, real grit to the characters.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

John Lee is fabulous

John Lee is the best audio narrator ever, in my opinion. I listened to this because my mother read and recommended a book from this series and I always start a series from the beginning. This did not disappoint. Lots of twists, great (but troubled) cast of characters. Highly recommended.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Book!

I really enjoyed this book. Great twist at the end! Harry Hole is a very interesting character.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic!

Jo Nesbo has created an amazing character in Harry Hole (pronounced Holy), an old fashioned detective with a heart of gold and a mean right. He is both humorous and cynical, poignant and sharp. John Lee's narration is endlessly engaging. If you haven't been introduced to Harry Hole, The Bat, Nesbo's first Hole story, is a great place to start. However, old fans who have already enjoyed some of Harry's other exploits, will find this introduction sure to please. You won't regret buying The Bat.

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    2 out of 5 stars

Unnecessary profanely and immoral situations

Much of the above does nothing to advance the plot or develop the characters. Moves too slow to keep my attention.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Unusual.

Well, it was unusual. it was interesting. I bought this because I had seen the movie The Snowman. and I wanted to learn more about the character.

even though this is billed as the first Harry novel, don't expect to learn why he's a binge drinker. I think. I'm not sure. It was unusual. it was interesting.

good enough that I'm going to pick another and listen to it.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

slow but very good

the plot is a bit slow but very good. the characters are deep and interesting. their development is the real selling point. as they are slowly revealed layer by layer it really pulls you in.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Stick with it

This book took some time to grab my interest but finishes very strong and a must to fully appreciate Hole in the series.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Unpredictable but a little drawn out.

I really like the side characters and the development of the story was wonderful. the main character was a little more flawed than I'm used to and I'm not emotionally invested in him yet. When the ending seemed to come, it was drawn out to what felt like almost half the book. That was a little bit frustrating. But I liked it enough to at least read the next book in the series.