Wednesday, July 8, 2015
The Bat Book Review
The Bat by Jo Nesbo
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Inspector Harry Hole of the Oslo Crime Squad is dispatched to Sydney to observe a murder case. Harry is free to offer assistance, but he has firm instructions to stay out of trouble. The victim is a twenty-three-year-old Norwegian woman, a minor celebrity back home. Never one to sit on the sidelines, Harry befriends one of the lead detectives, and one of the witnesses, as he is drawn deeper into the case. Together, they discover that this is only the latest in a string of unsolved murders, and the pattern points toward a psychopath working his way across the country. As they circle closer and closer to the killer, Harry begins to fear that no one is safe, least of all those investigating the case.
Review by Brittany:
This is a book that satisfies that craving of mine for mysteries that take place anywhere else. I'm often drawn to books that are based in other countries, and this one is a mystery that fits the bill.
Harry is a character that is both wonderful and awful. There's a point in the story a little past the halfway point where Harry turns into almost a despicable character, not what you'd expect of the inspector main character. I love that the author gave Harry this depth and made him into both a character the reader loves and one the reader loves to hate. I also fell in love with Birgitta, the love interest of Harry in this novel. I didn't want to love her (often the love interest in the first novel of a series is not the character to get attached to), but Birgitta and Harry had such a good banter with one another that I couldn't help myself. I also loved Otto, a flamboyantly homosexual clown with a circus troupe. Basically all of Nesbo's characters in this book were wonderful. That being said, I also appreciated Nesbo's willingness to introduce the reader to a character they might appreciate and then kill them off. Not many authors take that risk, but Nesbo did.
I also liked that I couldn't solve the crime. There's some satisfaction from being able to guess the ending, but finding out the ending and being surprised is more fun. In the case of this book, I didn't catch enough clues to guess who it might be; instead, I feel like if I read the book again I would pick up on the subtle hints that would tell me "whodunnit". To me, that is a large part of what adds value to this book.
I'm curious to see how Nesbo continues the series and what adventures Harry ends up on next. I plan to read this one again and also continue with the series as well.
"Human nature is a vast impenetrable forest which no one can know in its entirety. Not even a mother knows her child's deepest secrets."
"Everything you do leaves traces, doesn't it. The life you've lived is written all over you, for those who can read."
"Once something has been experienced, it's too late, you can't get back the feeling of experiencing the same thing for the first time."