Post Script: The Son – Jo Nesbo

The Son

Jo Nesbo

Random House UK, Vintage Publishing

Harvill Secker

ISBN: 9781448161102





Sonny is a model prisoner. He listens to the confessions of other inmates, and absolves them of their sins.


But then one prisoner’s confession changes everything. He knows something about Sonny’s disgraced father.


He needs to break out of prison and make those responsible pay for their crimes.




My View:

The Son is perhaps the best of the Jo Nesbo books I have read (I have only read the Harry Hole series, not the standalones). Here there is great character development, a strange kind of innocence and serenity that is The Son, a wonderful love story that blossoms and warms the heart and murder, savage crimes, death and a bizarre kind of rogue justice that has you cheering for the bad guy come hero. Complex and intriguing, this novel has it all!

The Son introduces you to the bleak world of Sonny Lofthus – imprisoned for crimes he did not commit; his father a corrupt cop who commits suicide, his mother overdoses shortly after and then Sonny rapidly dissolves into the oblivion of  a heroin addiction. Life in prison follows quickly.  Here he has a special place; a place of solitude and a strange kind of respect where other prisoners’ value his stillness and confess to him their sins, seeking forgiveness in an almost religious manner. His life changes when his version of the world is torn apart with a truth that burns his gut like acid reflux and the need for vengeance and justice consume his existence.

Retribution for horrible and brutal crimes is exacted. Sonny is a gifted killer,  yet naively innocent of the world; compassionate, honest and this reader could not but help cheer him on his quest for vengeance and …love. Nesbo builds this narrative intricately, providing depth and understanding of the main characters in this book, providing the reader with a hero they can worship at the altar of street justice and villains that are truly evil and deserving all that is metered out to them, and a scorching ending that is gratifying and full of hope. A wonderful narrative that I feel truly showcases Nesbo’s talent and creative skills.  ENCORE!!!!

3 thoughts on “Post Script: The Son – Jo Nesbo

  1. Carol – I admit I’m not as familiar with the standalones as with the Harry Hole series. It’s good to hear that this one lives up to the series in terms of quality. Interesting too that this gives us a look at prison life too – must give a novel perspective.

    • Margot – I feel this novel has so much more depth than the series – which i think largely relied on shock value for attention and whilst there is violence in this there is more emphasis on the narrative and character development and on moral dilemmas .

      • Oh, that’s very good to hear, Carol. I do like novels that focus more on character, narrative and so on than on violence. I know, ironic coming from a crime writer, but there it is.

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