The Snowman Nesb novel    The Snowman by Jo Nesbo (2010 fiction)

This is the most infuriating thriller I have ever read. I am an experienced devotee of detective stories, and I am usually able to accompany the plot line to a satisfying conclusion. Not here. I thought I had the solution in my sights on at least three occasions, but I hadn’t. Nesbo led me up garden paths, and then abandoned me, exposing me to unsuspected but convincing depths of character and plot development. The characters, located in various stages of relationship to Inspector Harry Hole, are compelling. The locations are cinematic in detail and design.The story line is ghoulish, Grand Guignol, either hypnotic or disgusting. Details are accurate and attest to a Hieronymus Bosch view of the human condition. I recommend The Snowman for a most challenging read, and as an introduction to an incomparable author.

Reviewed by Martin Waldron


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