Susanita (bardhlul) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

Book 3 - The Bat by Jo Nesbø

The electrifying first appearance of Jo Nesbø's detective, Harry Hole. Inspector Harry Hole of the Oslo Crime Squad is dispatched to Sydney to observe a murder case. Harry is free to offer assistance, but he has firm instructions to stay out of trouble. The victim is a twenty-three year old Norwegian woman who is a minor celebrity back home. Never one to sit on the sidelines, Harry befriends one of the lead detectives, and one of the witnesses, as he is drawn deeper into the case. Together, they discover that this is only the latest in a string of unsolved murders, and the pattern points toward a psychopath working his way across the country. As they circle closer and closer to the killer, Harry begins to fear that no one is safe, least of all those investigating the case.

This book grabbed me from the beginning, because I've been intrigued by Australia since I was a small child. Harry's fish-out-of-water experience forms part of the texture and charm of the story. He's also an intriguing character himself, and he spends a good deal of the time pulling back the layers of his past to other characters as well as the reader. I wish I could say I liked the unfolding of the actual mystery as much as I liked the characters and setting. It wasn't transparent or obvious, but it just left me vaguely unsatisfied in the end. To say more about the story would give away spoilers. I read this book due to its appearance on Amazon's "100 Mysteries & Thrillers" reading list, but I think I'll let it stand alone in the series for the time being.
Tags: european, murder mystery

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