Blood on Snow – Jo Nesbo

First, a consumer warning: this is a short book, more properly described as a novella than a novel.

Second, you are likely to read it in one sitting, but that’s not (only) because it is short; it’s because it is a great read.

Now, what are we talking about?

This is a 1970’s set crime story, told mainly from the first person perspective of a fixer (aka a killer) who is somewhat unusual. I won’t spoil any of the experience to be gained by discovering the character for yourself. Suffice it to say, there are some interesting aspects and ideas touched on.

This character has a love interest that he has never properly pursued: a girl he saved from the fallout of her relationship with a doomed junkie.

But there’s about to be a shock to the killer’s world, as the relationship with his sole employer is tested.

The writing style is somewhat different from Nesbo’s other books, and draws you well into the world view of the protagonist. But do not be deceived by the gentle narrative, for it is laced with a a surprise or two, and the odd morale challenge. And the proverbial dilemma of how much the reader should trust a subjective narrative is nicely handled here.

In short (ahem) this is a fine piece of character driven crime fiction, that is well worthy of your time. Up and coming or potential writers would do well to study it carefully, for there are many treasures within its simple facade.