Norwegian author Jo Nesbo
Readers who enjoyed Swedish author Stieg Larrson's Millennium Crime Series, the series that included the most sold book of 2010, The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest, will enjoy discovering Norwegian author Jo Nesbo, who covers a lot of the same snowy territory that Larrson did.
Nesbo (53) was educated as a stockbroker and played professional football for several years until an injury forced his retirement. He is a talented musician--he fronts the popular Norwegian rock band Di Derre*--and has recently taken up writing for children; he's just published Doctor Proctor's Fart Powder, a sort of Roald Dahl story that is a lot of fun. Your kids will enjoy it if you can get past the rude title. "Fart" by the way, is "prumpepulver" in Norse: I bet the kids will enjoy learning a new word that is a fun sounding alternative to the English one. Those "highlights" aside, Nesbo, an Edgar Award winner, is best known for his crime fiction.
I just finished reading The Redeemer, which is the 13th in Nesbo's Harry Hole (Ho-lay) series of cop dramas. The series follows Hole, a depressed and repressed police detective who struggles with alcoholism and works on solving crimes on the streets of Oslo. Hole takes on murderers, bank robbers, gunrunners, and his superiors in the department, who frown on his unconventional crime-solving approaches.
The Harry Hole novels are violent, often feature women in peril, and contain strong language, sex scenes, and some very scary bad guys. If these don't put you off, you'll find that Nesbo is a much better writer than the late Stieg Larrson. Nesbo's first novel in the series is The Bat, which is available at one of our local and splendid Carroll and Madison County libraries. Enjoy!
* You can check out Di Derre on Spotify. They're pretty good.