DATE READ: August 2011
NOTES: The Redeemer is a tautly plotted crime thriller. The wintery atmosphere of Oslo is brought to life as Harry Hole investigates the murder of a member of the Salvation Army. Much of the book follows the modern formula of a policeman with a troubled private life, drinking problem and antagonism to his superiors. However the writing is good, the characters well drawn and fairly credible and the action moves at a cracking pace.
The plot is fairly complex, involving a hitman (the Redeemer) from Croatia coming to Norway to carry out a contract killing. But who sent for him? Nesbo keeps us guessing right to the end. There are biblical references to the Redeemer and how he rises again on the third day – but this is not overdone. It may have been better with fewer characters but there were lots of twists and turns and it was a compulsive read.
Translators are rarely acknowledged – but Don Bartlett deserves congratulations for a very stylish translation.