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Harry Hole Books In Order

Publication Order of Harry Hole Books

The Bat (1997) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Cockroaches (1998) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Redbreast (2000) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Nemesis (2002) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Devil's Star (2003) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Redeemer (2005) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Snowman (2007) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Leopard (2009) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Phantom (2012) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Police (2013) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle


Pronounced (Hol-leh), Harry Hole is a fictional character and leading role in several novels written by Norwegian author, Jo Nesbo. On officer on the police force, Harry is depicted as a loose cannon. He is a heavy smoker and an alcoholic who lost his mother to cancer when he was in his early twenties. He also has a younger sister who has Down’s syndrome. He never really had a close relationship with his father. He is not particularly favored by his superiors or his colleagues due to his alcoholism and short fuse, however, he is so good at what he does they feel he is too valuable of an asset to the force to let him go.

The love of Harry’s life is a woman named Rakel; although, their relationship is consistently inconsistent as she is constantly walking in and out of his life due to his workaholic tendencies and alcoholism. She sees other men throughout the series but always ends up going back to Harry eventually. Her son, Oleg, looks up to Harry as a father figure, and they share a close bond throughout the novels. Often times throughout the series, Harry’s life comes together, but eventually falls apart again due to alcohol.

The Bat

The Bat, that was published in the year 1997,takes Harry to Sydney to observe the murder case of a young Norwegian woman, and local celebrity back home. Working alongside with a local detective he soon discovers that this was just the most recent in a series of murders stringing across the country, and the hunt is on for the mysterious psychopathic serial killer. Although he was warned to not get too involved, Harry finds himself befriending a local detective and one of the witnesses and getting in way deeper than he is supposed to. He soon realizes that the lives of those investigating the case are at risk.

The Cockroaches

The second chapter of the novel, Harry Hole, The Cockroaches, was published in the year 1998. In this novel, the very drunk Harry is sent on a plane to Thailand to hush up the murder case of the Norwegian Ambassador in a Bangkok brothel. Along the way he discovers that the streets of Bangkok are a dangerous place full of secrets. The name comes from the expression, when you see one cockroach, there are most likely hundreds hiding within the walls.

Other Harry Hole Novels

The Harry Hole series continues on in eight other novels including Rødstrupe, also known as The Redbreast, published in 2000 and in English in the year 2006; Sorgenfri, also known as Nemesis, published in the year 2002 and in English in the year 2008; Marekors, also known as The Devil’s Star published in the year 2003 and in English in the year 2005; Frelseren also known as The Redeemer published in the year 2005 and in English in the year 2009; Snømannen, also known as The Snowman published in the year 2007 and in English in the year 2010; Panserhjerte, also known as The Leopard published in the year 2009 and in English in the year 2011; Gjenferd, also known as Phantom published in the year 2011 and in English in the year 2012; and Politi, also known as Police in the year 2013. Police was published in English in the year of 2013 as well.

About the Author

Jo Nesbo was born on March 29, 1960 in Oslo, Norway. Jo still currently lives in Oslo, close to his daughter and former wife. A Norwegian author, Jo is most well known for his Harry Hole novels. He finished college with a degree in Business Administration and Economics at the Norwegian-School of Economics. Prior to starting his novels, Jo was also a journalist working freelance and a stockbroker. Jo was also a very talented football player. He played for the Molde-FK until he was injured (tore the cruciate-ligaments in his knee) and had to retire from his athletic career.

In addition to his novel writing, Jo is also a well known musician. He is the main song writer and vocalist for the Norwegian-rock band, Di Derre. Jo has written several other novels besides the novel Harry Hole series. This includes a series of children’s novels titled ” Doctor Proctor Novels”. The first of this series, titled Doctor-Proctor’s Fart-Powder, was published in 2007. The series continued in 2008 with Doctor-Proctor’s Fart-Powder: Bubble in the Bathtub, in 2010 with Doctor-Proctor’s Fart-Powder: Who-Cut the-Cheese?, and in 2012 with Doctor Proctor’s Fart-Powder: The Great-Gold-Robbery.

Along with his series novels, Jo has also written a few standalone novels as well. In the year 2001 he wrote, Karusellmusikk. In 2007 he wrote The White Hotel. In the year 2008 he wrote Headhunters which was adapted into film in 2011 starring Aksel Hennie, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Synnove Macody Lund, Julie Olgaard, and Eivind Sander. The highest-grossing Norwegian film of all time, Headhunters was nominated for several awards including four Amanda Awards, and a BAFTA Award for Best Foreign Language film. Jo’s newest novel, Sonner is set to be published some time in 2014. In the year 1999, Jo wrote a non-fiction piece titled Figures-in-the-Balkans. His novels are translated in over 40 different languages and over 9 million copies have been sold.

Jo has received multiple awards and nominations for his works. He received the Riverton Prize in 1997 for Best-Norwegian Crime-Novel of the Year for The Bat. In the year 1998 he received the Glass-Key Award for Best-Nordic Crime-Novel of the Year for The Bat. The Redbreast received the Norwegian-Booksellers’ Prize for Best-Novel of the Year in 2000. Nemesis received the Mads-Wiel-Nygaards Bursary in the year 2002. The Redbreast received the Best-Norwegian Crime-Novel Ever-Written awarded by the Norwegian book-clubs in 2004. The Devil’s Star received the Finnish-Academy of Crime-Writers’ Special-Commendation in 2007 for Excellence-in-Foreign Crime Writing. The Redbreast was nominated for Duncan-Lawrie International Dagger in 2007. The Snowman received the Norwegian-Booksellers’ Prize or Best-Novel of the Year in 2007. Doctor Proctor’s Fart-Powder was one of the finalists for Ark’s-Children’s-Book Award for Best-Children’s Book in 2007. The Snowman received the award of Best-Novel of the year from the Norwegian-Book-Club Prize in 2008. Doctor-Proctor’s Time Bathtub and Headhunters were both nominated-for the Norwegian Bookseller’s Prize in 2008. Nemesis was nominated-for the Edgar Award in 2010. Jo also received the award for the Norwegian-Peer Gynt Prize in 2013.

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