TITLE: The Bat
AUTHOR: Jo Nesbo
PUBLISHER: Harvill Secker
Quote: “Everything you do leaves traces, doesn’t it. The life you’ve lived is written all over you, for those who can read.”
Overview: The first in the Harry Hole series. An alcoholic detective from Norway arrives in Australia to investigate the death of a Norwegian ex-pat living down under. As clues unfold, the hunt for a murderer becomes a hunt for a potential serial killer. Mixed in with aboriginal legends and tales that parallel the plot, Detective Harry Hole must find the killer before others are murdered, and he must apply the stories he learns from the aboriginal people in order to find the killer.
Analysis: The Bat was one of those books that you start and want to finish as soon as possible to see whether your theories are correct. The plot was fast-paced and the characters, though massively flawed, are lovable, similar to a cute puppy that keeps peeing on the floor. I loved Jo Nesbo’s writing which was straight forward though also leaves enough off the table for the reader to fill in some blanks. I had heard mixed reviews of this book, especially from others who read the later Harry Hole books first (those books were translated into English prior to this one) but I found it to be an intriguing read that would appeal to most readers. If anything, the reviews I’ve heard of The Bat, and those of the remaining Harry Hole novels, makes me excited to read the rest of the series. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for an entertaining and, at times, frightening read.
Conclusion: Definitely check out Jo Nesbo and The Bat and fall into a murder mystery.