The Thirst: A Harry Hole Novel by Jo Nesbo

The Thirst: A Harry Hole Novel

byJo Nesbo

Hardcover | May 9, 2017

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#1 International Best Seller 

In this electrifying new thriller from the author of Police and The Snowman, Inspector Harry Hole hunts down a serial murderer who targets his victims . . . on Tinder.
 
The murder victim, a self-declared Tinder addict. The one solid clue—fragments of rust and paint in her wounds—leaves the investigating team baffled.
        Two days later, there’s a second murder: a woman of the same age, a Tinder user, an eerily similar scene. 
        The chief of police knows there’s only one man for this case. But Harry Hole is no longer with the force. He promised the woman he loves, and he promised himself, that he’d never go back: not after his last case, which put the people closest to him in grave danger.
        But there’s something about these murders that catches his attention, something in the details that the investigators have missed. For Harry, it’s like hearing “the voice of a man he was trying not to remember.” Now, despite his promises, despite everything he risks, Harry throws himself back into the hunt for a figure who haunts him, the monster who got away.

STARRED REVIEW 
"Exceptional . . . Nesbo depicts a heartbreakingly conflicted Harry, who both wants to forget the horrors he’s trying to prevent and knows he has to remember them in all their grim detail."
--Publishers Weekly

About The Author

JO NESBØ is a musician, songwriter, and economist, as well as a writer. His Harry Hole novels include The Redeemer, The Snowman, The Leopard and Phantom, and he is also the author of several stand-alone novels and the Doctor Proctor series of children’s books. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Glass Key for best Nor...
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Details & Specs

Title:The Thirst: A Harry Hole NovelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:480 pages, 9.53 × 6.71 × 1.59 inPublished:May 9, 2017Publisher:Random House of CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0735272476

ISBN - 13:9780735272477

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Read from the Book

PrologueHe stared into the white nothingness. The way he had done for almost three years. No one saw him, and he saw no one. Apart from each time the door opened and enough steam was sucked out for him to be able to glimpse a naked man for a brief moment before the door closed and everything was shrouded in fog. The baths would be closing soon. He was alone. He wrapped the white towelling bathrobe more tightly around him, got up from the wooden bench and walked out, past the empty swimming pool and into the changing room. No trickling showers, no conversations in Turkish, no bare feet padding across the tiled floor. He looked at himself in the mirror. Ran a finger along the scar that was still visible after the last operation. It had taken him time to get used to his new face. His finger carried on down his throat, across his chest, and came to a halt at the start of the tattoo. He removed the padlock from his locker, pulled on his trousers and put his coat on over the still damp bathrobe. Tied his shoelaces. He made sure he was definitely alone before going over to a locker with a coded padlock, one with a splash of blue paint on it. He turned the lock until it read 0999. Removed the lock and opened the door. Took a moment to admire the big, beautiful revolver that lay inside before taking hold of the red hilt and putting it in his coat pocket. Then he removed the envelope and opened it. A key. An address, and some more detailed information.There was one more thing in the locker. Painted black, made of iron. He held it up against the light with one hand, looking at the wrought ironwork with fascination. He would have to clean it, scrub it, but he already felt aroused at the thought of using it. Three years. Three years in a white nothingness, in a desert of empty days. Now it was time. Time he drank from the well of life again. Time he returned.Harry woke with a start. Started out at the semi-darkness of the bedroom. It was him again, he was back, he was here. “Nightmare, darling?” The whispered voice by his side was warm and soothing. He turned towards her. Her brown eyes studied his. And the apparition faded and disappeared. “I’m here,” Rakel said. “And here I am,” he said. “Who was it this time?” “No one,” he lied, and touched her cheek. “Go back to sleep.” Harry closed his eyes. Waited until he was sure she had closed hers before opening his again. He studied her face. He had seen him in a forest this time. Moorland, wreathed in white fog that swirled around them. He had raised his hand and pointed something towards Harry. He could just make out the demonic, tattooed face on his naked chest. Then the fog had grown thicker, and he was gone. Gone again. “And here I am,” Harry Hole whispered. Chapter OneElise walked down Thorvald Meyers gate, past plain four-storey buildings that had once housed the working classes in a poor part of a poor city, but where one square metre now cost as much as in London or Stockholm. September in Oslo. The darkness was back at last, and the drawn-out, annoyingly light summer nights were long gone, with all the hysterical, cheerful, stupid self-expression of summer. In September Oslo reverted to its true self: melancholic, reserved, efficient. A solid facade, but not without its dark corners and secrets. Much like her, apparently. She quickened her pace; there was rain in the air, mist, the spray when God sneezed, as one of her dates had put it in an attempt to be poetic. She was going to give up Tinder. Tomorrow. Enough was enough. Enough randy men whose way of looking at her made her feel like a whore when she met them in bars. Enough crazy psychopaths and stalkers who stuck like mud, sucking time, energy and security from her. Enough pathetic losers who made her feel like she was one of them. They said Internet dating was the cool way to meet new people, that it was nothing to be ashamed of anymore, that everyone was doing it. But that wasn’t true. People met each other at work, in classrooms, through friends, at the gym, in cafes, on planes, buses, trains. They met each other the way they were supposed to meet each other, when they were relaxed, no pressure, and afterwards they could cling to the romantic illusion of innocence, purity and quirks of fate. She wanted that illusion. She was going to delete her profile. She’d told herself that before, but this time it was definitely going to happen, that very night. She crossed Sofienberggata and fished out the key to unlock the gate next to the greengrocer’s. She pushed the gate open and stepped into the darkness of the archway. And stopped dead. There were two of them. It took a moment or two for her eyes to get used to the darkness, and for her to see what they were holding in their hands. Both men had undone their trousers and had their cocks out. She jerked back. Didn’t look round, just prayed that there was no one standing behind her. “Fucksorry.” The combination of oath and apology was uttered by a young voice. Nineteen, twenty, Elise guessed. Not sober. “Duh,” the other one said, “you’re pissing all over my shoes!” “I was startled!” Elise pulled her coat more tightly around her and walked past the young men, who had turned back to face the wall again. “This isn’t a public toilet,” she said. “Sorry, we were desperate. It won’t happen again.” … Ping. A match on Tinder. The triumphant sound your phone makes when someone you’ve already swiped right on swipes your picture right as well. Elise’s head was spinning, her heart was racing. She knew it was the familiar response to the sound of Tinder’s matchmaking: increased heart rate as a consequence of excitement. That it released a whole load of happy chemicals that you could become addicted to. But that wasn’t why her heart was galloping. It was because the ping hadn’t come from her phone. But the ping had rung out at the very moment she’d swiped right on a picture. The picture of a person who, according to Tinder, was less than a kilometre away from her. She stared at the closed bedroom door. Swallowed. The sound must have come from one of the neighbouring apartments. There were lots of single people living in the block, lots of potential Tinder users. And everything was quiet now, even on the floor below where the girls had been having a party when she went out earlier that evening. But there was only one way to get rid of imaginary monsters. By checking. Elise got up from the sofa and walked the four steps over to the bedroom door. Hesitated. A couple of assault cases from work swirled through her head. Then she pulled herself together and opened the door.She found herself standing in the doorway gasping for air. Because there wasn't any. None she could breathe. The light above the bed was switched on, and the first thing she saw was the soles of a pair of cowboy boots sticking off the end of the bed. Jeans and a pair of long legs, crossed. The man lying there was like the photograph, half in darkness, half out of focus. But he had unbuttoned his shirt to reveal his bare chest. And on his chest was a drawing or a tattoo of a face. That was what caught her eye now. The silently screaming face. As if it were held tight and was trying to pull free. Elise couldn’t bring herself to scream either.

Editorial Reviews

Winner of the 2017 Nordic Noir Thriller of the Year Award“His outstanding series featuring Detective Inspector Harry Hole has secured Jo Nesbo the undisputed position of Scandinavia’s leading crime writer.” —Nordic Noir Thriller of the Year Award citation“[V]ery good, one of Nesbo’s best. . . . Gory, disturbing, nightmare-inducing and terrific.” —The Times “It’s a big-boned, technicolour epic in the current Nesbo style, starting adagio and ending accelerando, but with the kind of close psychological character readings that distinguished his early work.” —The Guardian “An extremely gruesome journey to the darker recesses of human nature, this grisly treat will delight Nesbo’s fans.” —Sunday Mirror (UK) “Excellent . . . it rocks.” —Metro (UK) “Gripping from the get-go, deliciously dark and expertly plotted, this is Nesbo at his brilliant best.” —Heat (UK) “[D]eliciously dark.” —The Telegraph “[R]eaders can rejoice that one of the most iconic protagonists of modern crime fiction is back on the beat. . . . In his eleventh book featuring Hole, Nesbo deepens the already-complex portrait of his antihero. . . . Nesbo creates a fine balance between action and tension, with surprises lurking in unexpected corners that provide an edgy and visceral read. He’s a master of structure, style and no-pages-wasted plotting. But Nesbo’s greatest strength as a novelist is the way he places two opposing forces in battle: the perverse criminal and the compulsive detective. In Nesbo’s consistently excellent Hole series, The Thirst may well be the pinnacle.” —Paste   “The Thirst begins with the brutal killer sinking rusty metal teeth into a victim’s neck, and with that gruesome murder, you’ll want to sink your teeth into The Thirst and not let go.” —The Times of Northwest Indiana   “Jo Nesbo has ripped the throat out of the serial-killer genre. He’s exsanguinated it, soaking up every dark pleasure and wringing them out onto the page. There’s no need to ever read another one, Nesbo has so completely deconstructed the trope with a multi-dimensional novel that blurs lines among crime, psychological, procedural and, yes, horror thrillers. . . . [B]rilliant, shifting narrative. . . . Nesbo has a penchant for doing what few writers dare . . . So when the threat comes in The Thirst, you know anything is possible. . . . The Thirst ends with a tantalizing promise and a new threat. What’s coming will be dark and bloody, that much is certain. In the meantime, readers can clear their shelves of serial-killer books. Thomas Harris, Stieg Larsson, John Sandford. Might as well use them as door stops. Unless you are intentionally seeking disappointment. Because after this one, they just won’t compare.” —Robert Anglen, The Arizona Republic   “What distinguishes Jo Nesbo . . . is his wry sense of humour. He not only provides a super-complex plot with plenty of twists (two within the first twelve pages) but also skillfully continues the lives of the all-too-fallible characters we have grown to love and hate.” —London Evening Standard “The eleventh case for Harry Hole is well worth sinking your teeth into. . . . In the end the reason to come back for more is the sheer magnetism of Harry Hole. . . . The Thirst, like its stablemates, is a bulky but zippy 500-pager which never loiters in one place for long. Nesbo keeps you guessing with his usual bag of tricks, making everyone seem a little suspect (or almost everyone). His cynicism about bent coppers and unscrupulous journalists is an inexhaustible and entertaining sideshow. . . . In short, if you liked the other ten, you’ll greedily sink your teeth into this. And maybe by the time it appears in paperback many more millions will have been sold.” —The Arts Desk “[E]xpertly plotted with vividly drawn characters, frenetic police chases and philosophising villains, not to mention the usual bonus add-ons that are part and parcel of Nesbo’s thrillers. Esoteric science, ancient murder lore and indie music play their parts. . . . Expect to be thoroughly entertained.” —Crime Fiction Lover (blog) “The juxtaposition of the stunningly beautiful natural world and the savagery of the crimes can be alarming; towns and communities defiled. The infection is insidious. The clash between the raging, vengeful, deviant criminal and the flawed, conflicted, struggling protagonist is gripping and exhausting. Layers and subtext, nuance and shading: these books are engaging and addictive and unsettling. Quaint whodunits, these are not.” —Hometown Pasadena