Book Review: The Snowman by Jo Nesbø

As much as I moan about films ruining books, I get very excited when I see one of my favorites is going to be made into one. This instance the opposite actually happened; I saw the trailer for The Snowman and then decided that this was a book I just had to read.

The Snowman by Jo Nesbø is set in Oslo in November as the first snow of the year is falling. With the snow comes The Snowman, a menacing serial killer targeting women, all of whom disappeared on the first day of snow over the course of many years. It is up to Detective Harry Hole to catch the killer but not before he becomes a pawn in his game.

Firstly, I do not think you have to read the Harry Hole series in chronological order. I was very much able to follow the story of The Snowman after choosing it as my first Nesbø read. The only thing missing is some details of Harry’s personal life, but there is enough mentioned in the book that you can fill in the gaps pretty easily.

So, I was actually a bit disappointed by The Snowman. It was so hyped up in my head that I was bound to feel deflated though. I had a sneaky suspicion from the beginning who the killer was and I was right. The endings of thrillers are not an area I enjoy being right in. That’s not to say that I didn’t enjoy the journey because there were elements of intrigue and suspicion along the way, just not enough to give me goosebumps. Maybe the reason these feelings didn’t transpire is something to do with the translation of the story into English?

But maybe the tone of the book was intentional? I found the calm way in which it was written reflected the personality of Harry. Like the protagonist, it was intriguing but not likable, and I was also not able to build a connection with either. In fact, there wasn’t one character I was able to build a connection with, although, while this may have bothered me with other books, it didn’t take anything away from my reading of The Snowman.

Something I enjoyed: well, a decent chunk of the story was dedicated to the backstory of the killer. I like the psychological element this brings. I am also a freak for serial killers and it is such a treat to get inside their head – fictional or not.

Overal, I enjoyed The Snowman but I didn’t love it, and it didn’t have me rushing out to buy more of Nesbø’s work. Maybe I began with the wrong book? I’m willing to give this series another chance if you can recommend the best book in the comments below.

The Snowman by Jo Nesbø
The Snowman by Jo Nesbø


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.