The Devil's Star (Harry Hole Series #5)

The Devil's Star (Harry Hole Series #5)

4.1 68
by Jo Nesbo
     
 

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Oslo is sweltering in the summer heat when a young woman is murdered in her flat. One finger has been cut off and a tiny red diamond in the shape of a pentagram—a five-pointed star—is found under her eyelid. Detective Harry Hole is assigned the case with Tom Waaler, a colleague he neither likes nor trusts. He believes Tom is behind a gang of arms

Overview

Oslo is sweltering in the summer heat when a young woman is murdered in her flat. One finger has been cut off and a tiny red diamond in the shape of a pentagram—a five-pointed star—is found under her eyelid. Detective Harry Hole is assigned the case with Tom Waaler, a colleague he neither likes nor trusts. He believes Tom is behind a gang of arms smugglers—and the murder of his partner. But Harry, an off-the-rails alcoholic, is barely holding on to his job and has little choice but to play nice.

Five days later, another woman is reported missing. When her severed finger is found adorned with a star-shaped red diamond ring, Harry fears a serial killer is on the loose. Determined to find the killer and expose the crooked Tom Waaler, Harry discovers the two investigations melding in unexpected ways. But pursuing the truth comes at a price, and soon Harry finds himself on the run and forced to make difficult decisions about a future he may not live to see.

One of the brightest stars of Scandinavian crime writing, Jo Nesbø has been compared to Ian Rankin, Michael Connelly, and Henning Mankell. His novels are bestsellers throughout Europe, acclaimed by critics and revered by aficionados of thrillers and mysteries. Brilliantly plotted and paced, The Devil's Star shows Nesbø at his absolute best, combining powerful emotional resonance with truly stunning suspense.

Editorial Reviews

Patrick Anderson
The Devil's Star is a big, ambitious, wildly readable story that pits the protagonist against a serial killer and an enemy within the Oslo police department. The novel has its flaws, but for most of the way it's compelling…a novel worth reading, for its characters, for the quality of its writing and for its wealth of detail.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
A serial killer taunts Harry Hole in Nesbø's searing third crime novel to feature the Oslo police detective to be made available in the U.S. (after Nemesis). Still suffering from alcohol-fueled demons and obsessed with hunting for evidence against a clearly dirty cop, Hole grudgingly agrees to help look into the murder of a woman whose finger has been amputated and a red diamond stuck under her eyelid. More bodies follow, with the murderer leaving identical five-pointed diamonds (the titular devil's star) at each crime scene. At first the killings appear to be random, but Hole soon discovers an ominous pattern. Nesbø brilliantly incorporates threads from earlier novels, including Hole's often tumultuous relationship with his lover, Rakel, without ever losing the current story's rhythm. Even with—or perhaps because of—his flaws, Hole is arguably one of today's most fascinating fictional detectives. 5-city author tour. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Devastated by his inability to convince his superiors that fellow detective Tom Waaler is both guilty of his former partner Ellen's murder (The Redbreast) and an arms dealer, Harry Hole goes on a four-week bender. Dragged back to work by his loyal boss, Harry is partnered with Waaler to investigate what quickly looks like a serial killer on the loose in Oslo who leaves star-shaped red diamonds with his victims. Upset by his inability to maintain a relationship with girlfriend Rakel and her son, Harry dries out and buries himself in the case, investigating with only the help of forensic tech Beate and determined not only to identify the killer but finally to get Waaler. VERDICT Harry is one of the best lone-wolf cops for the 21st century, and Nesbø's third book is equally as good as The Redbreast and Nemesis. Scandinavian noir is alive and well, and Nesbø is one of its best authors. Highly recommended, especially for readers who like Henning Mankell's Kurt Wallander series (Faceless Killers) or Arnaldur Indridason's Inspector Erlendur series (Jar City).—Jessica Moyer, Univ. of Minnesota, Coll. of Education & Human Development, Minneapolis
Kirkus Reviews
As a serial killer terrorizes Oslo, Inspector Harry Hole (Nemesis, 2009, etc.) is battling even more fearsome demons. When copywriter Camilla Loen is shot to death, her index finger removed and a star-shaped red diamond tucked beneath her eyelid, Chief Inspector Bjarne Moller has the bright idea of pairing his heir-apparent, Inspector Tom Waaler, with barely functional alcoholic Harry, who's spent most of the previous month on unofficial leave drowning his grief over his late colleague, Officer Ellen Gjeltsen. But Harry doesn't just dislike and distrust Waaler; he's convinced that Waaler is Prince, the mob's inside man who murdered Ellen. So the salt-and-pepper rapport between Harry and Waaler is more like arsenic-and-cyanide. Even pulling Harry off the case so that he can investigate the disappearance of producer Wilhelm Barli's wife turns sour because a parcel containing her severed middle finger swiftly makes it clear that singer/actress Lisbeth Barli has become another victim of the Courier Killer. The exhaustingly wide-ranging case poses three crucial questions. What pattern underlies the Courier Killer's choice of victims and modus operandi? When the police arrest an innocent suspect, can Harry protect him long enough to get the goods on the real killer? And how can he possibly neutralize the hydra-headed Waaler, who grows more dangerous the more he's thwarted?Not all the answers are equally interesting, but even readers new to this white-hot series will be impressed by Nesbo's generous plotting and his insight into dark places in the human soul. Author tour to New York, Portland, Ore., San Francisco, Seattle, Washington, D.C.
From the Publisher
“A well-crafted rollercoaster of a book . . . Nesbø sets a cracking pace . . . A series of spectacular plot twists lead to a thrilling finale. Highly recommended.”
Guardian

“Compelling . . . Shocking and surprising . . . Expertly paced . . . I place Nesbø high up in the Scandinavian mystery league.”
—The Times

"The Next Big Thing... Absolutely gripping."
— Daily Telegraph

Vogue
“Nobody can delve into the dark, twisted mind of a murderer better than a Scandinavian thriller writer.”
Entertainment Weekly
“Nesbø has a knack for Euro noir.”
Toronto Star
“In crime fiction terms, the ongoing Harry Hole is epic along the lines of something Count Tolstoy might have dreamed up. . . . Tremendous emotional resonance.”
USA Today
“Reading THE REDBREAST is like watching a hit movie. . . . The pacing is swift. The plot is precise and intricate. . . . THE REDBREAST is surprisingly witty at times and often grim. But it’s always smart.”
Booklist
"Nesbo returns with another novel that is every bit the multitextured, complexly plotted, psychologically rich thriller that made Redbreast such an unqualified success. . . . No doubt about it: Nesbo belongs on every crime-fiction fan’s A-list."
The Times (London)
“Astonishingly confident. . . . The Devil’s Star scores with an intriguing plot and Nesbo’s mastery of pace and tension.”
The Independent
“Jo Nesbo has a credibly scary line on the power of corruption, and his complex plot culminates in a nail-biting episode with overtones of The Day of the Jackal.”
London Review of Books
“Bucks the trend… Nesbo’s long-range plotting is careful, and the debate about the Norwegian elite’s behaviour during the war cleverly managed.”
New York Times Book Review
“An elegant and complex thriller . . . Ingenious design. . . . Nesbo’s book eloquently uses its multiple horrors to advance a disturbing argument: suppressing history is an open invitation for history to repeat itself.”
Daily Telegraph (London)
“Superb.”
Washington Post Book World
“A fine novel. . . . THE REDBREAST certainly ranks with the best of current American crime fiction.”
The Guardian (London)
“A well-crafted rollercoaster of a book. . . . Nesbo sets a cracking pace, the shambolic Hole is exasperating and endearing by turns, and a series of spectacular plot twists lead to a thrilling finale. Highly recommended.”
The Guardian(London)
"A well-crafted rollercoaster of a book. . . . Nesbo sets a cracking pace, the shambolic Hole is exasperating and endearing by turns, and a series of spectacular plot twists lead to a thrilling finale. Highly recommended."
Michael Connelly
“Jo Nesbø is my new favorite thriller writer and Harry Hole my new hero.”
Booklist (starred review)
“Nesbo returns with another novel that is every bit the multitextured, complexly plotted, psychologically rich thriller that made Redbreast such an unqualified success. . . . No doubt about it: Nesbo belongs on every crime-fiction fan’s A-list.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062193964
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
01/03/2012
Series:
Harry Hole Series , #5
Sold by:
HARPERCOLLINS
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
34,684
File size:
1 MB

What People are saying about this

Michael Connelly
“Jo Nesbø is my new favorite thriller writer and Harry Hole my new hero.”

Meet the Author

A musician, songwriter, and economist, Jo Nesbø is also one of Europe’s most acclaimed crime writers, and is the winner of the Glass Key Award, northern Europe’s most prestigious crime-fiction prize, for his first novel featuring Police Detective Harry Hole. Nesbø lives in Oslo.

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The Devil's Star 4.1 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 68 reviews.
Cynder More than 1 year ago
This is a great cop/mystery series but I suggest that you read the first book in the series to know the characters.
Ronrose More than 1 year ago
This is a very good crime novel set in Norway, the authors home country. The characters and the plot are well thought out. I was surprised by a number of turns that the plot took. The main character, police detective, Harry Hole is on his last legs with the police department, his girlfriend, and humanity in general. He has been haunted since his childhood by his quilt of losing his younger sister in a bizarre elevator accident, which he was powerless to stop. Now the young female detective he had been working with on a police corruption case, has been murdered and he feels it is his fault. He tries drowning his guilt with liquor and pushing away all his acquaintances, including his girlfriend. An opportunity to redeem himself and to avenge the killing of his partner arises when he is forced to work a case with detective Waaler, whom Harry suspects of murdering his partner. The case starts when a girl is found naked, murdered in her apartment with one finger cut off. Under one eyelid a red star shaped diamond is found. This and two similar murders set in motion the twisting plot that brings the murder and Harry's problems to a denouement.
pipeandslippers More than 1 year ago
Jo Nesbo is a author that grows better with each novel. I purchased this novel online, because it has not been released in the U.S. and publishers have missed the boat with this author. I don't normally pay $25.00 for a paperback, but this one is worth every penny. The Devil's Star starts off fast and moves into an intricate plot that's seldom seen in the mystery genre. A novel worth ordering from the U.K., if you have to, and will leave you feeling exhausted from the ride. Publishers have to be crazy to have stopped printing Nesbo's novels after only two, when the ones that follow are some of the best ever written in any country. Jo Nesbo is simply the best in the business.
harstan More than 1 year ago
Oslo police detective Harry Hole drowns his greatest professional and personal failures with alcohol. He tried to persuade his superiors that Detective Tom Waaler killed Harry's police partner Ellen Gjelten (see The Redbreast), but no one believed him; Harry also believes the dirty cop sells weapons on the streets. On the personal front, he has been inept in connecting with his girlfriend and her son. Ironically, Chief Inspector Bjarne Moller teams up Hole and Waaler on the murder investigation of Camilla Loen whose finger was removed and a devil's star shaped diamond jammed under her eyelid. Harry is assigned a missing person's case that soon ties back to the Loen murder. Those corpses are followed by similar bodies as Hole realizes a serial killer is on theloose. The third Hole Norwegian police procedural is a great whodunit as the hero struggles to sober up in order to work the case ALONG side his Nemesis. The story line is fast-paced from the onset and never slows down as Harry struggles in all aspects of his life except investigating a homicide. Sub-genre fans will relish his latest caseload on and off the job. Harriet Klausner
iPodReader More than 1 year ago
I'm a fairly cheerful person myself, so I'm not sure why I like these quirky and unhappy characters, but to me Harry Hole is somebody I just want to root for. His personal demons are worthy adversaries and Harry keeps up the good fight. The plot of this book is sufficiently intricate to keep me guessing, the villains are truly villainous and matters are tied up but not so neatly as to be incredible.
csaint More than 1 year ago
Well written novel that makes you truly feel connected to the protagonist in the story, Harry Hole. Great plot that kept you involved and trying to solve the crime alongside the Oslo police force. The sub-plot romance that went on between Harry and Rakel was a great touch! This was the first Nesbo book that I have read, but I will definitely back track to some of his earlier works.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Once you start on Jo Nesbo you better have time to finish, you won't want to do anything else! ADDICTIVE!
BillPilgrim More than 1 year ago
This is a detective-mystery and thriller. Nesbo is one of the crop of Scandinavian mystery writers that is currently so popular and respected. His lead detective is Harry Hole, who at the start of the book is in a deep depression and has relapsed into his alcoholism, due to his failure to prove that another police inspector is the head of an arms smuggling ring and has committed murder. Now, he has to work with this man to find a killer who leaves a star-shaped, red diamond on his victims. I found the plot to be well constructed and believable. I had some problem, especially at the beginning, with the way the time-line was presented. It seemed to me that too large gaps were skipped at the early stages of the investigation, without anything apparently happening in those periods. At the end of the book there are several possibilities for the true perpetrator of the killings, and I was not able to choose among them until the author revealed the secret. This made the book more enjoyable for me.
NYCED More than 1 year ago
This is the 5th book in the series that takes place in Oslo, Norway. Too bad the first two were never published here. Jo Nesbo takes his place amoung Connorly, Child and Burke with a well written fast paced thriller. The characters are well established and the story is a real thriller. While not necessary to read this book, reading the other two available in paper, will help establish the main characters and provide some back story which will help understand the subplot of this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I hope one day they will make a tv show based on the novels
CanonPete More than 1 year ago
Love all the books in this series! 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All of the Harry Hole series are stand alone novels (so that you don't have to read the entire series -- although I would highly suggest that you do). The pace is exciting and concerns what length people will go to portray something that they are not. As always, Harry Hole battles his many demons to get to the bottom of the crimes. I have read all 10 books in the series and cannot wait for the next one. Jo Nesbo is master of this genre and in addition to the police procedure, forensics, fast paced action, the characterizations are so well drawn out that you feel as though you know them personally. He also draws on the Norwegian landscape and culture so well that he should probably work for Norwegian National Tourism.
zebra9er More than 1 year ago
Pretty creepy and very interesting. You won't be putting this one aside.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Harry Hole is the worlds most flawed protagonist. Besides the plot, which is quite good, the novel overdoes Harrys near-death experiences. I thought the Snowman was better.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A book I couldn't put down. reommend
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Like the other Harry Hole Mysteries by Nesbo, this one is gripping and difficult to put down. The humanity and foibles of the characters, combined with an intricate plot and suspenseful writing make a winner. It's also always interesting--as a US based reader--to learn a bit about the Norwegian culture and geography. And--as in the Dragon Tattoo books--everyone has IKEA furniture!
grammyNH More than 1 year ago
Terrific mystery with a different nuance.
drayce More than 1 year ago
I just can't get enough of Jo Nesbo.i think i have read all of his books.I still have Head Hunters and Phantom to read but I am reading them inbetween other books to make them last longer.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a complex sttory!
jake9 More than 1 year ago
greatly enjoy all of his books......just wish they had been available to read in order......the translator deserves mush praise!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When will this be available on the Nook?
Lynie More than 1 year ago
When a young woman is found murdered in Oslo with a tiny red star shaped diamond under her eyelid and a finger missing, Harry Hole is assigned to the case. When the finger of a woman reported missing is found with a ring embellished with the same type of red diamond, the team realizes they're dealing with a serial killer. Unfortunately, Harry is partnered with Tom Waaler, someone Harry doesn't like or trust. Harry has long believed that Tom murdered his friend and former partner, which makes working together nearly impossible. But Harry has no choice because he is barely holding on to his job. His drinking is still a problem and his one champion at work insists that they have to handle the case together because of scheduled vacations which leave the police force short-handed. Working with Waaler and the investigation into the murders brings Harry to the brink, putting himself and everyone he loves at risk in this breathtaking mystery by Nesbo. As I plow through all of the available books by Jo Nesbo, my only regret is that I didn't read them in order; in fact it seems that I've read them in totally reverse order. As the characters change along the way, it would have been nice to be able to follow Harry Hole's relationships with his friends and co-workers. Each of Nesbo's books is terrific by itself, but I'd recommend that you do it the right way to better understand all of the references to past events and characters. Lynn Kimmerle
knittingnancy More than 1 year ago
This brilliant, charasmatic and seriously flawed detective is emotionally dissintegrating under his inability to find the person responsible for killing his partner. As everything else in his life falls apart, we see that you can't keep a good man down. His mind works better than most even when he is asleep, and he methodically plucks away at two separate cases to eventually discover....I'm not telling. Read it! There are some confusing political relationships here, and I suspect the confusion is because there are 2 volumes of this series between this one and Nemesis have not been translated into English. Even so, this is a good read on it;s own, I just seem to have become inmeshed in Harry Hole's character's development.
Man_Of_La_Book_Dot_Com More than 1 year ago
"The Devil's Star" by Norwegian author Jo Nesbø is the third in the Harry Hole series. This novel was published in Norway in 2003, but just recently arrived in the USA. A serial killer is on the loose in Oslo. The killer cuts off his victims' fingers and leaves a tiny five corners red diamond shaped like star. Oslo police officer Harry Hole tries to catch the killer before he kills again, all the while battling corruption within the Oslo police force and his own demons. The Devil's Star" by Jo Nesbø has a very complex hero. Harry Hole is a tormented alcoholic who is losing his relationship and sanity. Harry would have lost his job as a police officer if he didn't have the uncanny ability to solve complex crimes. The book deals with a Norwegian serial killer, who we are constantly reminded is a rarity in Norway because it's an American disease. Along with the killer, Harry Hole also has to prove that a standout officer is corrupt and battling the bottle. The novel introduces a sophisticated plot which, to be honest, had me scratching my bald head several times trying to remember who are the characters, what did they do (or didn't do) and their relationship to the plot. Like any good book, all the pieces fit together at the end. The plot is good, but not great. The only issue I have with the plot is that the ending almost comical, as if it is out of a James Bond movie where the villain talks so much he lets the hero out of his clutches. The detail Nesbø brings to his characters and to the city of Oslo is riveting and compelling. Nesbø takes the reader into the dark nooks of the city where tourists rarely venture. the writing was very good and extremely readable. The author has a gift of observing the obvious and bringing it to the reader's attention in a round about way. "Beyond the crackle of Harry's breathing on the phone Beate could hear a car stopping and the engine being switched off. At that moment she noticed a change in the way the light fell in her room" I cannot tell you how many times I've had that feeling, when I'm deep into a project and suddenly look up without noticing what time it is. Nesbo captured those kind of feelings expertly.
TiBookChatter More than 1 year ago
The Devil's Star is a perfect example of why I adore Scandinavian crime fiction. Detective Harry Hole is what'd you call, a functioning alcoholic. He's lost his girlfriend and spends his waking hours stumbling through his cases, drinking in bars and smoking cigarettes like they're going out of style. He's incredibly flawed, but good at what he does so his superiors often look to him for input, even though physically he is falling apart. Time is running out for old Harry though because his boss just can't cover for him anymore and he's just stepped into a very high-profile case involving a serial killer with a penchant for pentagrams and red diamonds in the shape of a star. This is my first experience with Jo Nesbo and I must say, I have fallen in love. From the moment I opened this book, I was completely pulled into the story and could not put it down. The writing is crisp and the tension between the characters is so flawlessly executed, that you find yourself sitting on the edge of your seat, just waiting for one of them to pick-up on it themselves. The dialogue is smartly written and has that sophisticated, snappy quality that I find in Scandinavian novels. I won't compare Nesbo's writing to Larsson, as they each have their own, distinct style, but their books both possess that shrewdness that I've come to love. You don't have to be a lover of crime fiction to enjoy The Devil's Star so if you aren't, I encourage you to try it anyway. It has a great story, well-developed characters and writing that will force you to read it in one sitting. Apparently, Nesbo has written other books featuring Detective Harry Hole. One of which (The Snowman) makes its US debut in May 2011. I can't wait!