The Leopard - Don Bartlett, Jo Nesbo, Jo Nesbø Harry Hole last case cost him dearly; he lost the love of his life, and himself, and is now living in Hong Kong. He eases his pain in the squalor of Hong Kong’s opium dens and, far more dangerous to his health, he is in debt to the Triads.

Meanwhile on the streets of Oslo a murderer has killed two women in a very uniquely sadistic way. The police are struggling to make any headway in the case so they send young -- and very attractive -- detective Kaja Sollness out to Hong Kong to bring home Harry Hole.

This latest instalment in the Harry Hole series seems to have divided his readers as Michael Carlson says

“Jo Nesbo has pulled out all the stops for this one, though in some ways more is less. There are three continents, a chilling execution device, and an action-packed finale that almost screams out for film adaptation. If this is an opening, or widening, of Hole's appeal, it's a brave thing to do…”

Certainly there are sections in the novel that are ever so slightly incredulous and the relationship didn’t quite ring true. Some readers felt that The Leopard was a step too far down the action hero route and that a certain thread in the book borrows too heavily from the Thomas Harris books. Also that the violence is descending into formulaic super inventive serial killer territory...Nesbo is trying too hard and loosing something of the essence of Hole series.

Well I loved this brick of a book!

It was all I expect from Jo Nesbo; well written, well controlled, well constructed labyrinthine crime novel. In the end the murders could have had any number of perpetrators (my number one suspect was killed off pretty near the start…I would make a rubbish detective)

Harry Hole, a true maverick, with a talent for self destruction is one is one of the most charismatic, haunted characters in modern crime fiction.

‘Harry is the quintessential detective: battle-scarred, world-weary, chain smoking, alcoholic but with a razor sharp mind and, of course, fantastically attractive to women.'

For such an action packed, globetrotting page turner it was also very personal and intimate and the passages which feature Harry and his Father are very touching... exposing a side of Harry rarely seen.

'You know me,' Harry said as Oystein stopped on red outside the Radisson SAS Hotel.
'I bloody do not,' Oystein said, sprinkling tobacco into his roll-up.
'How would I?'
'Well, we grew up together. Do you remember?'
'So? You were already a sodding enigma then, Harry.'


Oh and please, publishers and reviewers, do stop comparing him to Larsson…I loved the Millennium trilogy as much as everyone else but I think Nesbo is better writer.