The Snowman by Jo Nesbø & Don Bartlett


8 Critic Reviews

Nesbø breathes new life into the serial killer subgenre, giving it a Norwegian twist and never losing his laconic hero in the process.
-Publishers Weekly


Internationally acclaimed crime writer Jo Nesbø’s antihero police investigator, Harry Hole, is back: in a bone-chilling thriller that will take Hole to the brink of insanity.

Oslo in November. The first snow of the season has fallen. A boy named Jonas wakes in the night to find his mother gone. Out his window, in the cold moonlight, he sees the snowman that inexplicably appeared in the yard earlier in the day. Around its neck is his mother’s pink scarf.

Hole suspects a link between a menacing letter he’s received and the disappearance of Jonas’s mother—and of perhaps a dozen other women, all of whom went missing on the day of a first snowfall. As his investigation deepens, something else emerges: he is becoming a pawn in an increasingly terrifying game whose rules are devised—and constantly revised—by the killer.

Fiercely suspenseful, its characters brilliantly realized, its atmosphere permeated with evil, The Snowman is the electrifying work of one of the best crime writers of our time.

About Jo Nesbø & Don Bartlett

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Jo NesbØ is a musician, songwriter, economist, and one of Europe’s most critically acclaimed and successful crime writers today. His first novel featuring Police Detective Harry Hole was an instant hit in Norway, winning the Glass Key Award for Best Nordic Crime Novel—the most prestigious crime-writing award in Northern Europe. Norwegian readers voted The Redbreast the best Norwegian crime novel of all time. NesbØ lives in Oslo.
Published May 10, 2011 by Vintage Crime/Black Lizard. 401 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction, Crime, Horror. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
Peak Rank on Jun 05 2011
Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for The Snowman
All: 8 | Positive: 7 | Negative: 1


on Apr 18 2011

The smart, suspenseful cat-and-mouse game will remind some readers of Erik Skjoldbjærg’s 1997 film Insomnia—and that’s high praise indeed.

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Publishers Weekly

on Mar 28 2011

Nesbø breathes new life into the serial killer subgenre, giving it a Norwegian twist and never losing his laconic hero in the process.

Read Full Review of The Snowman | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

NY Journal of Books

Below average
Reviewed by Robert Lamb on May 10 2011

The Snowman comes off as an attempt to blend traditional crime fiction with the horror genre, a sort of Stieg-Larsson-meets-Stephen-King affair. Doesn’t work.

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Suite 101

Reviewed by Elizabeth Gregory on Jan 01 2011

A number of critics have been moved to liken Nesbo to Stieg Larsson since the publication of The Snowman; many readers would say that Nesbo has been doing it better for years.

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USA Today

Above average
Reviewed by Carol Memmott on May 23 2011

Let's agree that from now on we will no longer ask whether each and every Scandinavian crime novelist is the "next" Stieg Larsson...If you don't know Nesbø, it's time to get with it.

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Lincoln Journal Star

Reviewed by GEORGE WRIGHT on May 24 2011

If you're a fan of Nordic noir, you'll like Nesbo's book. If you like dark mysteries, this one will keep you up at night.

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The Agony Column

Reviewed by Rick Kleffel on Jun 11 2011

Don Bartlett's translation of Nesbø's prose is really quite superb. 'The Snowman' has a creepy, sort of horror-novel feel to it. Nesbø is quite descriptive and his evocations of landscapes, crime scenes and even everyday domestic tableaus are somehow chilling beyond the frigid weather.

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Reviewed by DREW MCWEENY on May 01 2012

It's good stuff. Obviously, I read a translation, but Nesbo seems like a smart writer with a strong feel for the genre. Hole is an archetype writ large, the brilliant detective who can't manage his own personal life or his own habits.

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