Bestseller Jo Nesbø’s exceptional 11th Harry Hole novel (after 2013’s Police) finds the alcoholic, demon-ridden, occasionally suicidal Oslo police detective in better shape than usual. Harry is “currently a sober lecturer at Police College.” In the past, he often woke up full of angst; now he’s consistently waking up feeling happy. As for his marriage to his great love, Rakel, “If he could have, he would have been more than happy to copy and paste the three years that had passed since the wedding and relive those days over and over again.” Of course, this relatively blissful state can’t last. Harry soon joins the hunt for a serial killer, whose MO—cutting the throats of his victims in vampire fashion—is similar to that of the one killer who escaped him and still invades his dreams. Meanwhile, Rakel slips into a mysterious coma. Nesbø depicts a heartbreakingly conflicted Harry, who both wants to forget the horrors he’s trying to prevent and knows he has to remember them in all their grim detail.
Jo Nesbø, trans. from the Norwegian by Neil Smith. Knopf, $26.95 (448p) ISBN 978-0-385-35216-1
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