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The Redbreast: A Harry Hole thriller (Oslo Sequence 1) Paperback – 2009

389 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 656 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; First printing of this edition edition (2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099546779
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099546771
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 3.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (389 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,798 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"THE NEXT STIEG LARSSON" (INDEPENDENT)

"A page-turner you won't want to put down" (Time Out)

"A complex, utterly captivating story" (Evening Standard)

"Scary...culminates in a nail-biting episode with overtones of The Day of the Jackal" (Independent)

"Norway's finest crime writer... Nesbo clearly demonstrates his skill at executing expertly-crafted, well-paced thrillers that he sustains to the very end in a compelling fashion. As first novels go, The Redbreast and The Devil's Star are as accomplished as any reader is likely to experience" (Daily Express)

Book Description

A brilliantly tense thriller from Scandinavian crime writing superstar Jo Nesbo.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

190 of 198 people found the following review helpful By Huck Flynn VINE VOICE on 9 Jun. 2008
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I must concur with most of the other reviewers - a superb detective story and a charismatic new detective to rival, if not surpass, Kurt Wallender. Where Nesbo scores over Mankell is the tightly plotted story line and plausible psychological motivation despite the complicated and dramatic theme. There are plenty of ironic twists and sharp dialogue as the grumpy (what else) and intuitive Harry Hole follows up a hunch about a deadly sniping rifle smuggled into the country that leads him via a trail of dead bodies to an amazing serial killer and a deadly vengeance whose origins date back to WW2 on the Eastern Front. There is a fair bit of scene switching from the trenches to the modern setting but the killer's identity is fairly well hidden. The reader also gets a fascinating insight into the Norwegian political conscience about their divided loyalty during the war. The detection is a tantalising chase and the action is compelling right to the end. Well written and translated and nesbo leaves a loose end that will surely propel Hole into another story soon. I've already bought the follow up Devil's Star and look forward to more sleepless nights.
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43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By H. meiehofer VINE VOICE on 24 May 2010
Format: Paperback
This is an utterly fantastic book. Two narrative strands, one historic and one contemporary, are intertwined, leaving the reader intrigued as to exactly what the connection will turn out to be.

The historic strand addresses issues which must be painful to many Norwegians; specifically the involvement that some of them had in supporting the Nazis to the extent of fighting alongside them on the Russian front.

The writing in this novel is absolutely superb. There is one sequence in particular where Nesbo absolutely captivates the reader and enables him to feel the pain experienced by his central character, Harry Hole. This starts with a chapter which flits between events which are happening simultaneously, much like jump cuts in certain films. This is followed by a series of chapters consisting simply of telephone messages left by Harry. These communicate very effectively all of the pain, anguish and guilt he feels at this point lifting this novel above the run of the mill detective story.

The book has many sub-plots, but these are all handled so well that they do not detract from the narrative drive and the pace of the story is well maintained.

The two strands of the narrative come together at the end in a way which is both convincing and (at least to this reader) unexpected.

Nesbo is quite simply one of the best crime novelists on the planet and the Redbreast finds him absolutely at the top of his game. I cannot recommend this enough.
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Mr TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 30 Jan. 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
You must have noticed the marketing drive behind Jo Nesbo by now! Posters popping up everywhere and if you are anything like me you may stop and think - too much hype? Well, I am pleased to say that having just finished The Redbreast, this is a good police thriller, with a sympathetic leading man in Harry Hole, and a dense structure that will keep your heart paced right to the very end. In places the Norwegian history and the dark tales of World War II may seem a little confusing but stick with it, Nesbo wants it to be...

For those like me who are new to the series and get hoplessly lost as to the order of the novels here it is

2000 - Rødstrupe; English translation by Don Bartlett: The Redbreast (2006)
2002 - Sorgenfri; English translation by Don Bartlett: Nemesis (2008)
2003 - Marekors; English translation by Don Bartlett: The Devil's Star (2005)
2005 - Frelseren; English translation by Don Bartlett: The Redeemer (2009)
2007 - Snømannen; English translation by Don Bartlett: The Snowman (2010)
2009 - Panserhjerte; English translation by Don Bartlett: The Leopard (2011)
2011 - Gjenferd (2011) (English: Phantom, 2012)
2013 - Politi (2013) (English: Police, 2013)

Start reading now...the series is very worthwhile and this is the cop thriller at its best.
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Format: Paperback
Extra Information: The first two books for this Harry Hole series The Bat Man and The Cockroaches have not been produced for translation at this time. The Redbreast would be the third book in this series, if you were to start this series my recommendation would be from The Redbreast. The series then follows through in order with Nemesis, The Devil's Star and finally The Redeemer which will then bring everyone up to date for the release of The Snowman March 2010.

Review - The Redbreast

The Redbreast is a wonderful complex, tightly constructed novel; shifting between history and a contemporary modern day crime plot. The Author Jo Nesbø brings us into his Oslo and story during late 1999. Detective Harry Hole and work partner Ellen Gjelten have been given a routine security assignment but it doesn't take long for a communication break down and all to go horribly wrong. Over at police HQ a decision from the seniors are quickly made to promote Harry to the rank of inspector, a promotion combined with a move to a screened operation in POT, also known as getting him out of the way and cover up any police blunders. Harry's new assignment is to monitor neo-Nazi activities; he soon discovers a high-calibre rifle has been smuggled into the country, a favourite weapon for any assassin.
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