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Nemesis  A Harry Hole Mystery
Jo Nesbo
Translated from Norwegian
Harper 2009

Nemesis is sequentially the fourth of so far eight mystery novels by Norwegian Jo Nesbo. You do not need to be familiar with the previous Nesbo novels to enjoy Nemesis but it does carry over a plotline from the previous Harry Hole mystery, The Redbreast. The series is translated by Don Bartlett and aside from a couple of very minor glitches, such as an object occupying a “pride of place” on a cabinet and sometimes too Britishy vocabulary, this thriller is a very good read if you a very well handled complex plot. Book version at Amazon

Nemesis opens with a bank hold-up where a clerk is killed.  Along with others, Hard drinking detective Harry Hole is put on the case. He pairs up with Beate Lonn, a new addition to the force who can recognize every face she has ever seen. While is girlfriend Rackel and her son are in Russia for a custody hearing Harry meets with a former flame named Anna and wakes up the next morning in his own pad with no recollection how he got there. The former flame is dead. There is another bank robbery and the pressure mounts to catch the bank robber.

Add someone trying to frame Harry for Anna’s murder, a search for the bank robber that leads Harry to a now jailed master criminal and gypsy. Toss in an old grudge, twins, a colleague or two out to get Hole, and a jilted husband or two and you get Nemesis.

This Norwegian mystery novel has a lot of characters and subplots but Jo Nesbo manages to both not lose nor overwhelm the reader. The author has fun with names sometimes such as a clever criminal named Raskol and a police captain named Bjarne Moller.

If you are the kind of reader who likes to discover a new writer and dive into a series, Jo Nesbo is an excellent choice.

The correct order for Harry Hole novels is as follows: The Bat Man, The Cockroaches, The Redbreast, Nemesis, The Devil s Star, The Redeemer, The Snowman, and The Leopard.