FICTION

Blood on Snow

Knopf. Apr. 2015. 224p. tr. from Norwegian by Neil Smith. ISBN 9780385354196. $23.95; ebk. ISBN 9780804172561. F
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OrangeReviewStarOlav and his employer, a major crime boss, agree that Olav is good for one thing only—serving as a hit man who expertly "fixes" up messes. However, when Olav is commissioned to kill his boss's wife, things start to go south for him. Olav knows if he takes her out, he is in danger of knowing too much and will have to be eliminated as well. He has to figure out a plan that will allow him to please his boss and still survive the contract. Unfortunately when he tails the wife, Olav becomes smitten with his new target. Nesbø steps away from his popular "Harry Hole" series (Police) to create a sympathetic, soft-hearted assassin trying to endure while following orders. This title is one of three short novels Nesbø wrote under the pen name Tom Johansson that have been optioned for movie rights (they were purchased by Leonardo DiCaprio and the movies will possibly star him).
VERDICT Olav is not Harry Hole, but readers will love him just the same. This tender killer who tries to maintain reason and compassion in a brutal world will appeal to Nesbø's fans and generate new followers. Highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, 11/17/14.]

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