Book Review: The Devil’s Star

The Devil’s Star

Jo Nesbø

Harper Paperbacks

464 pages

Harry Hole is a drunkard.  He’s falling apart at the seams and the most important women in his life have faded.  He’s hit rock bottom when he’s called upon to assist with a murder investigation after the body of a woman named Camilla Loen  is found in her flat.  Hole is forced to work on the investigation with fellow detective Tom Waaler, who readers may remember from Nesbø’s previous book Nemesis.  Hole is convinced that Waaler is involved in the dark underbelly of the crime world but is unable to prove it, so he grudgingly goes to work with him.

Hole and Waaler quickly come to the realization that there is a serial killer on the loose after another victim turns up, so they are running against the clock to try and find the killer before he strikes again.  And boy, is the reader taken on a ride! Just when I thought I had everything figured out, I was thrown through another loop. Which was fine with me, because despite his extreme flaws, I really started to care for Hole and was rooting for him along the way.

I have wanted to read one of Nesbø’s novels for a few months after seeing a review of his book The Snowman.  I knew that it wasn’t the first of his books but even after looking up the order, I always get confused.  So when I was at Barnes & Noble a few weeks ago I noticed two of Nesbø’s books on one of the tables: this one and The Redbreast.  I now know that The Redbreast is the first Harry Hole novel, at least as far as those that are published into English. The truth is, it didn’t sounds all that interesting, so I skipped it and picked up The Devil’s Star instead.  In doing so, I also inadvertently skipped over Nemesis too, and as a result I pretty much spoiled the plot of that book since it was discussed heavily in this book.  So my plan is to continue reading on in order and skipping those two books, at least for the time being.

For those of you that are in the dark about the order of the Harry Hole novels, here it is:

•The Bat Man (not published in English)

•The Cockroaches (not published in English)

•The Redbreast


•The Devil’s Star

•The Redeemer

•The Snowman

•The Leopard (being released in the US in December 2011)

•The Phantom (released in Norway in June 2011.  No plans yet for an English translation)

The reason I was most anxious to read Nesbø’s books is because they seemed to be in a similar vein to Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy.  I am happy to say I can see the comparison.  After just one book of Nesbø’s books, I can’t hold him in as high esteem as I old Larsson, but damn, it’s close.

I read this book for the RIP challenge.

Book Reviews:

Book Chatter

S Krishna’s Books

Jenn’s Bookshelves

You’ve GOTTA Read This!

Rhapsody in Books

I purchased this book from Barnes & Noble.


10 Responses

  1. I read them out of order and wasn’t bothered a bit. I mean, I wish I had read them IN order, but Nesbo is so good and I love Harry so much, it basically didn’t matter!

  2. Nesbo’s books have the same sensibility to them that Larsson’s do, but they are a bit different as writers.

    I read these books all out of order and I haven’t even read them all yet. I still think The Devil’s Star was probably the best one, but I could be biased since that was the first one I read.

  3. Totally an awesome public service you have provided here. I have read these out of order, despite my attempts to read them in order, and it completely derailed me. Major spoilage. I still enjoy them immensely. The Redbreast is a good read, but definitely not his best. I loved The Devil’s Star, in fact I have loved them all. I have The Redeemer and The Leopard sitting on my nightstand as I speak, thanks to Jill. Just as an aside, Robin Sachs narrates the audios, and he is absolutely AMAZING.

  4. I haven’t read anything from this author. I would really need to be in the mood to read this type of book. I don’t read alot of creepy, scary books. I get scared VERY easily!

  5. I am with you on always being lost re: the order of the books in this series! I have become a huge stickler for reading books in series in chronological order after a disastrous reading of Gaudy Night by Dorothy L Sayers, which was definitely ruined by my reading that book as though it were a standalone. So thank you for compiling that list! I have no idea why they would publish the English version of these books out of order, but I can tell you that it bothers me!

  6. This was my first Nesbø book as well (my thoughts: and I liked it.
    I didn’t feel it spoiled the series for me though, I still want to read the rest.

  7. For some reason I haven’t been interested in reading this series but you and Sandy make it sound good! However, I’m pretty picky about series being read in order and I think it would drive me crazy not being able to read all of them because they aren’t published here.

  8. I’ve downloaded a few Nesbo books – they do sound good.

  9. I really need to read Nesbo, but I’m such a wimp when it comes to violence, etc…

  10. I think I really need to try reading one of these books, have heard many good reviews of them, and I recently finished reading Larsson’s Millennium trilogy.

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