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Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Devil's Star - A Review

After writing half-dozen best sellers in Scandinavia and Europe, Norway’s answer to the next rising star of Scandinavian thrillers is Jo Nesbo and he brings the pounding beat of “The Devil’s Star” to take America by storm.

Detective Harry Hole, is climbing out of the wrong side of the drunk-tank trying to recover from his partner’s murder and the demise of his long term relationship with Rakel. To make matters worse, Hole suspects the detective he is forced to partner with now, as being implicated in his partner’s death and is generally a crooked cop.

When the initial investigation unearths a dead woman with a missing finger and a small, red, star-shaped diamond under her eyelid, the crew is stumped. With no leads and no new information, they are surprised when five days later the finger of a missing woman shows up with a red diamond ring. Correctly, they surmise a serial killer is on the loose. By the time the third woman shows up dead with a missing finger and a red diamond, they have pin-pointed evidence to who they refer to as the Courier Killer. A man on a bicycle is acting as a deliveryman to gain access. Hole has to determine whether these are random killings, or where these woman chosen for a special reason.

It all centers on the diamond, a red pentagram that when diagrammed and placed on a map, leads them to the time sequence and the place where the final killing while take place. With no PD support, Hole has to strike out on his own. As we peel through each layer of witnesses and suspects the tension builds. With the killer closing in and his partner trying to kill him, too, Hole is on his own. By the time he finally unmasks the sociopathic murderer, we have been treated to a story like never before. This is a police procedural for the ages.

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