Wednesday, March 7, 2018

The Thirst by Jo Nesbo

Detective Harry Hole has left the detective bureau where he is renowned as the man who has captured some of Norway's most horrific killers.  Instead, he has entered a better phase of his life.  He is married to the love of his life and is now teaching other policeman how he did what he did.  His stepson is working towards becoming a policeman also and life is good.

At least, it's good for a while but murder never sleeps.  Two events shatter Harry's world.  His wife is taken to the hospital for what Harry thinks is a routine visit and ends up in an induced coma.  The doctors are not optimistic about her chances or indeed, what is exactly wrong with her.  At the same time, a new killer has erupted.  He is a vampire killer and drains his victims of their blood.

The police commissioner, who has ridden Harry's success into his job, has further ambitions.  He basically blackmails Harry into returning and working on the case which the papers and TV are going nuts about.  Harry hates breaking his promise to his wife to give up the danger and obsession of a major murder case, but in reality, he knows he has missed it and it is what he is meant to do.  He forms a team of former colleagues along with a psychologist who has studied the subject and prepares to go forth to capture the killer, who seems to be one who he captured years before and who escaped from prison.

There isn't another detective in the genre like Harry Hole.  His self-destructiveness which wars with his love of his wife and son keeps the reader on edge and pulling for him.  Those around him often get caught in the destruction that follows him, yet are devoted to him.  Throughout, Hole's basic goodness and willingness to do what is necessary regardless of the price is compelling.  This book is recommended for mystery readers.

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