Solve: Harry Hole

On anxiously awaiting the latest from Jo Nesbø and his Norwegian PI.

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POLICE by Jo Nesbø, Read by John Lee, Random House Audio/ Books on Tape

Last week I blogged about listening to a debut so this week I’m turning to the tried and true. We all have those series we love, and we start anticipating the next installment roughly 30 seconds after finishing the current one. If you’re a mystery lover, it’s darned hard not to have a plethora of such series. For me, one of those is Jo Nesbø’s Harry Hole series.

I have enjoyed most all of Nesbø’s books, but I’m especially fond of his Harry Hole series, maybe partly because that’s how I discovered Nesbø and maybe partly because the narrators have consistently performed these audios so well. This is a rare series situation where I enjoy the narrations of both Robin Sachs and John Lee equally. While their interpretations of Hole are distinct, each is true to Nesbø’s hero.

The series was published a little irregularly in the United States. We were introduced to Hole with the third of Nesbø’s series, THE REDBREAST. Ultimately, though the first (THE BAT) and the second (COCKROACHES) were recorded for U.S. listeners. So if you’re new to the series, you can listen in order. The first two books are great, but even better if you don’t have the knowledge of the end of the series ahead of time.

This month Harry Hole returns in THE THIRST. It’s been a few years, and several standalones from Nesbø, since we last visited the flawed Norwegian cop-turned-private-investigator in POLICE, and I’ve been anticipating him every second since. Have you?

 

Solve: A Criminal Defense

What clues do you use to discover your next great listen?

There’s something special about discovering an author with their debut. You can be torn between taking a chance on someone new—let’s face it, committing hours of your time is a big deal—and finding the “next big thing.” In the world of mystery audiobooks, especially, there are so many long-running series (and longtime author-narrator partnerships) that we can count on new books coming out from our favorite authors on a regular basis. We’re creatures of habit, and we like what we know and are already comfortable with. However, in the case of audiobooks, sometimes a narrator can help nudge us in the direction of that discovery. If I know I enjoy listening to a particular performer, I’m more likely to take the plunge. How about you?

Have you discovered a new author, or even a new-to-you author, who you’ve checked out recently on audio? Did the narrator help you decide to listen? Or maybe you got a recommendation from a friend? What prompted you to take a risk on a new (to you) author?

Being a fan of Peter Berkrot’s work, I was immediately intrigued when I saw that he was narrating William L. Myers, Jr.’s debut audiobook, A CRIMINAL DEFENSE. Combine that with AudioFile‘s glowing review, and I’m ready to try A CRIMINAL DEFENSE for myself! How about you?

criminal-defense

A CRIMINAL DEFENSE
Earphones Award Winner
by William L. Myers, Jr., Read by Peter Berkrot

Solve: Moms of Mystery

From Deborah Crombie’s Gemma James to Gregg Hurwitz’s Eve Hardaway, we’re celebrating the moms of mystery!

Sunday is Mother’s Day (don’t forget your mom!), so I wanted to highlight some of my favorite moms in crime fiction. Let’s face it, in detective fiction, the moms are usually relegated to smaller supporting roles, with some exceptions. It’s hard to fight crime and raise kids at the same time. Not impossible, though, as Deborah Crombie’s Gemma James illustrates. Granted, she has some help from her husband and partner in crime, Duncan Kincaid.

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Kathy Reich’s Temperance Brennan is a mother with a grown daughter. That frees up more of her time to investigate all those bones!

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Olivia Spellman in Lisa Lutz’s The Spellman Files series can be a questionable mother at times, but she definitely provides plenty of humor.

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Mysteries with amateur sleuths feature more mothers, such as Diane Mott Davidson’s single mom, Goldy Bear Schultz; Karen MacInerney’s stay-at-home mom, Margie Peterson; and of course Donna Andrews’s Meg Langslow, mother of twins.

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And the thriller sub-genre often puts the mother front and center—sometimes in disturbing ways. Thrillers show us just how fierce mothers can be, like Marcus Sakey’s Anna Reed in GOOD PEOPLE, Carla Buckley’s THE DEEPEST SECRET, or Gregg Hurwitz’s DON’T LOOK BACK.

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Moms help make the world go ’round, and that’s certainly true in the mystery and suspense realm. Who are some of YOUR favorite moms of mystery?