Jo Nesbø

This article is from 2011.

Jo Nesbø

Jo Nesbø

Crafty Oslo crime scribe brings us his fiendish ’tec

There are many ways to cause a fatality, and crime writers are renowned for finding the most imaginative route to the grave possible. But Norwegian author Jo Nesbø has really outdone himself in his latest novel The Leopard. His serial killer’s instrument of choice is so gruesome, it’s hard to believe a human mind could dream it up.

Yet somehow, despite this, even readers who abhor violence (myself included) find themselves utterly enthralled by Nesbø’s writing. Of course it doesn’t hurt that his booze-soaked, broken-spirited detective Harry Hole is so fiendishly good at his job that seeing him unravel a murder is like watching Rolf Harris paint: ‘Can you tell who it is yet?’ Well not usually, no, given that Nesbø is a master of the twist and turn, with The Leopard in particular reaching a supposed conclusion several times over before the true ending reveals itself.

Nesbø’s first Harry Hole novel to be translated into English, The Redbreast tackled the unspoken problem of neo-Nazism in Oslo – something tragically brought to the fore in recent events. Whether Nesbø will share his opinion on life in his – and Hole’s – home city during his Edinburgh International Book Festival appearance remains to be seen.

24 Aug, 3pm, £10 (£8).

Jo Nesbø

The Nordic crime explosion shows no sign of abating and everyone seems to be searching for the next Stieg or Henning. Across the 600 plus pages in The Leopard, Norway’s Nesbø is looking set on continuing to mine this golden seam. In the depths of winter, the bodies of two young women are found, both with inexplicable…

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