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The Leopard  By  cover art

The Leopard

By: Jo Nesbø,Don Bartlett - translator
Narrated by: Robin Sachs
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Publisher's summary

Two young women are found murdered in Oslo, both drowned in their own blood. Media coverage quickly reaches fever pitch: Could this be the work of a serial killer?

The crime scenes offer no coherent clues, the police investigation is stalled, and the one man who might be able to help doesn't want to be found. Traumatized by his last case, Inspector Harry Hole has lost himself in the squalor of Hong Kong's opium dens. Yet when he is compelled, at last, to return to Norway - his father is dying - Harry's buried instincts begin to take over. After a female MP is discovered brutally murdered, nothing can keep him from the investigation.

There is little to go on: a piece of rope, a scrap of wool, a bit of gravel, an unexpected connection between the victims. And Harry will soon come to understand that he is dealing with a psychopath for whom insanity is a vital retreat, someone who will put him to the test in both his professional and personal lives as never before.

Ruthlessly intelligent and suspenseful, The Leopard is Jo Nesbo's most electrifying novel yet - absolutely gripping from first to last.

©2011 Jo Nesbo (P)2011 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

“Intense . . . Nesbø moves the action easily from Hong Kong to Norway, with side trips to the Democratic Republic of Congo, without ever losing the plot’s sense of urgency.” ( Publishers Weekly, starred)
“Nesbø knows exactly what he’s doing [in] this gripping, intricately plotted tale . . . Like all intelligent crime fiction, this book is not only about multiple murders by heinous means. It is also about legacies, most specifically about the good and evil, love and hate, passed from one generation to the next. This vivid, violent novel promises to speak on many levels to many readers.” ( Library Journal)
“Outstanding . . . Probably the best big crime novel you could lay your hands on this year.” ( BBC Radio 4)

Featured Article: Worldwide Thrills—The Best International Thriller Audiobooks


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What listeners say about The Leopard

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

Simply Fantastic! A great buy!

I have to say I've enjoyed the Harry Hole series just as much as the Dragon Tattoo trilogy, if not more. The detective work is fascinating and clever. The infighting and inter-dept police politics bring both frustration and humor to this remarkable novel.

Best of all we are blessed to see inside the mind of a genious detective and possibly the best hero I've encountered in any series. Buy this book! You will not regret it.

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29 people found this helpful

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

Ah yes.... A Good Mystery but.....

Jo Nesbo is new to me, this is the first book of his I chose to read and now I am glad I found this author. However I now know that I should have read at least Snowman if not some of the others in the series fist, this book last. And although I really liked many things about this book, the plot is a bit convoluted at times and here and there it got a wee bit wordy. The other problem I had, as I did with the Larsson books, are the many names to my American ear that sound quite similar. So at times I found myself lost as far as who was who.
The storyline/plot however is solid and this book made me want more of this author; it held my interest throughout. So the 4stars.

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23 people found this helpful

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

A Tough Listen, an Irresistible Series

I've listened to every available Jo Nesbo Harry Hole book. Each one seems to get more violent and harder to listen to, yet they keep me hooked. The plots are intricate and twisted. Mistakes are made. But I want Harry to be happy, and it seems that he suffers more emotionally and physically with each book. The author is literally dismatling Harry by bits--a finger in the Snowman, his jaw in the Leopard. A brilliant, flawed and doomed hero. How can you resist that?

I hope the books currently unavailable in the US are soon translated; I want to know what happens in between those now available and in the beginning. I'll keep coming back as long as the books keep coming over.

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18 people found this helpful

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

Robin Sachs is great. Makes book come alive!

What did you love best about The Leopard?

Robin Sachs' narration.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Leopard?

Haven't finished listening to it yet.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, but too long for me to do so. Have to divide it.

Any additional comments?

I'm tempted to buy Redbreast since Robert Sachs is also the narrator for that Jo Nesbo book as well.

It's a bit off putting that Harry Hole has such addiction problems. Wish he'd get over that. I'd probably give every book 5 stars then.

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14 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Gauntlet Has Been Thrown Down, Michael

Michael Connelly, Jo Nesbo - the two best writers of detective fiction over the last decade in this humble reviewers opinion. Occasionally I've decided that Michael is the best on the planet after an inspired story - but then I go through an intense journey with Jo and have to admit that the Norwegian has all the tools to claim that mantle.

This story has a lot of subtle twists I did not see coming. I even thought the book was over and did not understand why my ipod indicated that there was 3 hours left. Does it really take that length of time to wrap things up? I quickly learned that there was a lot of adventure, suspense and twists still in store for me.

Nesbo introduces a diabolical device called a Leopold's Apple in this book. I had to research if it really exists after finishing the book. I will leave the answer to that for all the mystery readers who do not read the back of the book first or in this case Google the answers before starting their new adventure.

So Michael (as if he really cares), you were the best a few months ago - but the gauntlet has just been thrown down by Mr. Nesbo. I hope you and your narrator are up to the challenge and I get to reap the rewards when I acquire your next audiobook.


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13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Could Not Be Better

Like many readers/listeners, I was captivated by the Millenium Trilogy and powerfully drawn to a whole new cast of talented Scandinavian writers.....Henning Mankel, in particular (couldn't seem to get enough of Kurt Wallander for a while there). The new star author, however, is Jo Nesbo and the action has shifted westwards to Oslo. His police inspector Harry Hole is the bomb. Narrator Robin Sachs is the bomb as well. The best voice for the grittiest character ever. I made the mistake of ordering The Nemesis with someone other than Sachs as narrator. I will be buying the book instead. I am serious.....ROBIN SACHS is HARRY HOLE!!! The Leopard is a spectacular listen. It'll help to listen to the series in order, but it is not a deal killer. Just try Jo Nesbo as soon as you can.


[For whatever reason (vanity, I suppose), I used to not mention that I have devoured a certain book or series via the audio route. Isn't, after all, just listening to a book ridiculously easy fare compared to actually flipping pages? News flash -- I'm over it! As an adult who spends a fair amount of time driving alone, Audible has rejuvenated my commute! I often spend a little extra time in the office parking lot and even in my own carport refusing to turn off the IPod. I am hooked, just like those nice folks in the TV ad!]

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11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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Another great read

After being introduced to "The Bat" I went on a Jo Nesbo quest and read the rest of the Harry Hole books on Audible. "The Leopard" is the sequel to the "Snowman". I enjoyed the depth of the story, the intricacies of the plot and the powerful characters. Even the bad guys are "good". These two books are very similar although they stand alone. I must admit that I was concerned after reading Sean Barrett's "The Bat" I thought I would be disappointed with Robin Sachs, but I wasn't.
However, I have three negative points about "The Leopard": (a) Nesbo doesn't tie all the loose ends and I can only assume another sequel is forthcoming. (b) Another commentator pointed this out - one has to be very careful listening to the story because the Norwegian names are strange to the North American ear and you can get distracted. (c) I pointed out earlier that I enjoyed the humor in "The Bat". There are a couple of funny lines in "the Leopard" but the essential humor in the face of human atrocity is missing.
In the end though well worth the money.

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This issue of the pronunciation of "Hole" ...

... is getting a little silly, and distracting. Let's put it to rest.

1. In Norwegian the name "Hole" is pronounced "O" like in "pool" and "e" like in "ethnic".

I'm not making it up, this was Jo Nesbø's response to a direct question. The question is asked near the bottom of that page under "Frequently Asked Questions".

You can Google "Silent Letters in Norwegian" and learn that there are only four or five, and none of them is "e".

In Norwegian the name "Hole" is pronounced "OO-leh".

2. In English the word "Hole" is pronounced, well, like "hole", or "whole" if that helps.

People with foreign-language names often acquiesce to English-speaking people mispronouncing their name, especially if their name is the same as or similar to an English word or name. In America my friend Pettersson is the English "Peterson", in Sweden he is "Pedder-Shown". Even with common languages it gets muddled. In America my last name is like the North Carolina city of Durham, but in England it was like ... well, hard to write, but it sounded to me like "Dyeurrum". (To phone solicitors, however, it is always "Der Ham".)

Early on the producers at Audible.com decided to let Robin Sachs pronounce Harry's last name like the English "hole". Several books were produced and narrated by Robin Sachs using that pronunciation.

Robin Sachs is great. He is the voice of Harry Hole. But he does not pronounce Hole the same way a Norwegian would.

No problem, we're not Norwegian. And it never would have been a problem if the "The Bat" had not been translated and published. This is the first book written in the Harry Hole series, but the most recent in order of Audible.com production. In "The Bat" Harry has this exchange in an airport in Australia:

---

"The arrivals hall was crowded with travel reps and limousine drivers, holding up signs with names on, but not a Hole in sight. He was on the point of grabbing a taxi when a black man wearing light blue jeans and a Hawaiian shirt, and with an unusually broad nose and dark, curly hair ploughed a furrow between the signs and came striding toward him.

"'Mr Holy, I presume!' he declared triumphantly.

"Harry Hole considered his options. He had decided to spend the first days in Australia correcting the pronunciation of his surname so that he wouldn't be confused with apertures or orifices. Mr Holy however, was infinitely preferable."

---

Fine, this makes perfect sense in Norwegian, most of whom speak excellent English. Good enough to know what a hole is and how to pronounce "holy". So Mr. "OO-leh" is content to be called Mr. "Holy" as that is preferable to being called Mr. "Hole".

So I ask you, if Robin Sachs had narrated "The Bat", how would he have pronounced "Hole" subsequently? Like the English "hole"? Or, as Thor Knai (in "Nemesis") or Sean Barrett (in "The Bat") did, more or less as "OO-leh"?

None of that matters. Robin Sachs did not narrate "The Bat".

Thanks to his international fame, Jo Nesbø is undoubtedly aware by now that the difference in pronunciation is likely to cause a distraction and so is unlikely to write another passage like the one in "The Bat" that makes an issue of the pronunciation of "Hole". Robin Sachs can narrate every future Harry Hole novel and pronounce Hole as hole, and enjoy great success and popularity.

Unless Nesbø kills off Harry Hole ...

P.S. Jo Nesbø in the cited FAQ has a nice way of explaining the pronunciation of the ø (O with a backslash) in his last name. "... like the o in Peter Seller's pronunciation of 'bomb' in the Pink Panther movie." I'm not likely to forget that.

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  • JB
  • 01-31-12

very bloody images! Be aware!

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Story kept me at the edge onf my seat but some scenes were a bit too much for me-blood and guts types.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Wow! This page turner kept me up all night.

What made the experience of listening to The Leopard the most enjoyable?

Great characters. Great story.

What did you like best about this story?

Could not put this book down!

Which scene was your favorite?

The avalanche and the results.

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

When the father asked the son to help him die mercifully.

Any additional comments?

Will definitely recommend this book.

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6 people found this helpful