The frigid landscape as his hunting ground, a sociopath who calls himself “The Snowman Killer” has targeted the one person for whom he wants to show off his methodical, unthinkable skills: the lead investigator of an elite crime squad. With cunningly simplistic baits such as “Mr. Policeman, I gave you all the clues…” he begs to have a worthy opponent to play his sick game.
For Detective Harry Hole (Michael Fassbender), the murder of a young woman on the first snow of the winter feels like anything but a routine homicide case in his district. From the start of the investigation, The Snowman has personally targeted him with taunts—ones that continue to accompany each new vicious murder.
Fearing an elusive serial killer long-thought dead may be active again, the detective enlists brilliant recruit Katrine Bratt (Rebecca Ferguson), to help him connect decades-old cold cases to the brutal new ones. Succeed, and they will lure out the psychopath that’s been watching them from the shadows for who knows how long. Fail, and an unthinkable evil will strike once again during the very next snowfall.
“The Snowman,” the seventh book in Jo Nesbø’s best-selling Harry Hole series, has enthralled global audiences since it was first published in 2007. The novel took the beleaguered detective and his creator to an entirely new level and readership, and it topped The New York Times Best-Seller list in U.S.—as well as marked Nesbø’s first No.1 in the U.K. charts and firmly establishing his place as one of the elite international crime writers.
For the majority of U.K. and U.S. readers, this was their first introduction to the cop, and they believed Nesbø to be an overnight success. “The truth is that I had been in those countries and published for around 10 years,” he laughs. “It was a bit like when Tom Waits had success with ‘Swordfish Trombone,’ a journalist asked him, ‘What did you do to finally find success?’ He said, ‘I didn’t do anything differently. I’ve been here for 15 years. It’s not me coming to you, it’s you coming to me.’”
What is it about the investigator that enthrals readers all across the world? Like so many of his literary associates, he is a wholly flawed man who struggles with a personal life littered with ragged cracks and dark crevices. An alcoholic who is unreliable and disorganized, he has an innate inability to commit. Still, for all his personal failings, he is the consummate detective: scrupulous, determined and creative—a man who will stop at nothing until justice has been served. He is the genuine antihero, an impossible character, but impossible not to like.
What producer Piodor Gustafsson appreciated about the character of Harry was his deep sensitivity. He explains: “Being very vulnerable makes Harry much more interesting than a hard-boiled detective. As empathetic people, we see ourselves in him. After solving a case, he’s been so infected by it that he can’t protect himself from the evil he’s had to approach. He’s such a reluctant detective and doesn’t want to continue the work. But he’s the best, and until someone who’s better than him comes along, he must continue.”
“The Snowman does have that other element that the previous books don’t have, and that is the horror element,” adds Nesbø. “The title ‘The Snowman’ conveys a certain image, as does the idea of an innocent thing that is taken out of context and put in a new context; the more cozy and familiar it is, the scarier it becomes.”
Watch the horror unfold when The Snowman opens October 19th.