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Headhunters (2008)

by Jo Nesbo

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,691808,489 (3.51)78
Roger Brown is a corporate headhunter, and he's a master of his profession. But one career simply can't support his luxurious lifestyle and his wife's fledgling art gallery. At an art opening one night he meets Clas Greve, who is not only the perfect candidate for a major CEO job, but also, perhaps, the answer to his financial woes: Greve just so happens to mention that he owns a priceless Peter Paul Rubens painting that's been lost since World War II--and Roger Brown just so happens to dabble in art theft. But when he breaks into Greve's apartment, he finds more than just the painting. And Clas Greve may turn out to be the worst thing that's ever happened to Roger Brown.… (more)
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English (65)  Norwegian (3)  German (3)  Dutch (3)  Danish (2)  Swedish (2)  French (1)  Greek (1)  All languages (80)
Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
Nesbø nagyon jó abban, hogy élő karaktereket alkosson. Itt van ez a Roger. A szerző egyetlen fejezetben képes ellenállhatatlan késztetést ébreszteni bennem, hogy odarángassam Rogert a pofonfa alá, és megrázzam. (Őt is, meg a fát is.) Egy arrogáns, amorális kis genya, aki elit céges fejvadászként igazi bullshit munkát végez*, de úgy tekint magára, mintha valami művész lenne, a humán erőforrások Paganinije. Arra persze nem marad agyi kapacitása, hogy a recepciós lány nevét megjegyezze, de mindegy, minek is az, recepciós lányok nevét nem szoktunk megjegyezni. Aztán persze Nesbø finomít a figurán: kiderül róla például, hogy valójában egy kortárs Rastignac, aki a nincstelenségből, egy elnyomó apa árnyékából tört fel a nagyok közé, és titokban egyfajta extrém Robin Hood: kirabolja a gazdagokat, a pénzt pedig odaadja... no nem a szegényeknek, hanem csak szegény feleségének, hogy az nyugodtan elszórakoztassa magát a kulturális pénznyelővel, amit Galériának csúfol. Robertünk tehát nagyvad, vagy legalábbis annak képzeli magát – de aztán találkozik egy igazi nagyvaddal, és kiderül, hogy ő csak valami kis termetű menyétszerű ragadozó a nagymacskák között.

Szóval ügyes könyv: jól odatett, izgalmas szereplők, lendület, fordulat, minden, amit a szemünk-szánk kíván. Ugyanakkor nem tudok szabadulni a gondolattól, hogy ha van látványpékség, akkor kell lennie látványhentesnek is, és az kábé úgy néz ki, mint ez a Nesbø-regény: túlságosan véres, túlságosan trükkös, és minden túlságosan meg van magyarázva. A csavarok persze csavarosak, de talán túl is vannak csavarva picinykét, aminek következtében az olvasó ugyan élvezi, amit lát (már ha szereti a vért meg a csavarokat), de közben nem igazán hiszi el, hogy ez tényleg van, hogy ez így tényleg megtörténhet.

* Munkakörének lényege, hogy ha egy cégnél megürül egy felsővezetői állás, akkor a fejvadász keres nekik valakit, aki más cégnél ugyan már megbukott felsővezetőként (ahogy az előző tíz állomáshelyén is), de náluk majd bizonyára nem fog. Közben meg az összes résztvevő a lelke mélyén tisztában van vele, hogy az említett felsővezetői állást egy girhes arapapagáj is kielégítően el tudná látni, elég, ha megtanítják neki a „következő költségvetési évre kirobbanó pénzügyi teljesítményt prognosztizálunk” mondatot, és ezt elég megnyugtatóan ismételgeti a részvénytulajdonosok előtt. ( )
  Kuszma | Jul 2, 2022 |
Even though there are a couple of classic Nesbo twists at the end of this they didn't make up for this being quite a boring slog of highly improbable escapades to wade through. Prefer the Harry Hole series. ( )
  Stephen.Lawton | Aug 7, 2021 |
My reading has hit a bit of a slump of late and as a result I have about 4 books on the go at once. My hope was that by reading many different books one would spark my interest into life. I picked this up from a charity bookstore because I have really enjoyed the Harry Hole books written by Jo Nesbo. As the cover above boasts, it is now a movie, but as is typical of me, I haven't seen it because I always want to read the book first where possible.

Our story revolves around Roger Brown, a good headhunter. So good in fact that he rated as being the best headhunter in the whole of Norway. He lives what, on the surface, would appear to be a dream life. He has a vast house, a flash car, and a beautiful wife. However, underneath this veneer of respectability there lies a dark secret, he is an art thief. His unique position in life puts him in regular contact with the kind of people who collect art. His procedure is relatively straight forward. During interview he finds out if they have an art collection, of what kind and also when they will be away from the property. Then it is a simple matter of breaking in and swapping the real painting with a good forgery. The forgery will be discovered eventually but not until many months later. He is very careful to make sure he leaves no trace and has no contact with the people selling on the stolen art. It's almost the perfect crime.

Things start to go awry when he interviews a very canny operator who has a painting far more valuable than he has targetted before. On the surface this man is like any other but Roger soon finds out that he is dealing with someone who could ruin him for good.

This book was ok, the characters were not particularly well developed and at no point did I find myself connecting with them in any way. The plot does get fairly ridiculous in places, so much so that I can only assume it must have been toned down for the movie. I found the book to be quite below the usual standard of Nesbo. It was ok and it did re-ignite my mojo but nothing more than that. ( )
  Brian. | Jul 25, 2021 |
Roger Brown is a headhunter, pretty much the best. He is married to Diana, but can’t really afford the lifestyle she wants. She runs a small art gallery (that he paid for). When the former head of a tech company in Amsterdam comes to Norway, he is the perfect candidate for a big tech company in Oslo. When Roger meets him, he also discovers that he has a rare piece of artwork. Far too tempting for the sometimes-art thief/forger! And things go very awry…

It took me a while to “get into” this. Even when it picked up, unfortunately, my mind was a bit elsewhere, but I did get my mind back on what I was reading after a bit. At first, the twist at the end confused me a bit, but it was explained. It’s kind of one of those things where it’s tempting to go back knowing what you know “now”, at the end of the book, to see how you had been led astray in your thinking. I’m rating it “ok”, but I feel like if my mind had been paying better attention at the moment it picked up, I “should” be rating it good. ( )
  LibraryCin | May 27, 2021 |
This book falls short for two major reasons:
1. The beginning is a chore.
2. The "twist" ending provides a false, emotional punch

There are enjoyable bits peppered throughout, making the effort not a total loss. ( )
  illmunkeys | Apr 22, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
If you thought Scandinavian crime fiction couldn’t get better than Steig Larson and Henning Mankell, you’re wrong.. Norway’s Jo Nesbo is better than either and this book is far and away his finest. Already a best-selling film in Europe and just sold for a U.S. version, Headhunters is smart, skillful, perfectly cast and full of twists that will keep you spinning.

Nesbo has given his stalwart Oslo cop Harry Hole a rest. The headhunter is Roger Brown, the most successful in Norway. Everyone vies for his skills and pays plenty. But Roger is living way beyond his considerable means. One problem is his gorgeous and expensive wife, Diana. But not to worry, dear. Roger’s profession takes him into the mansions of the richest and most cultivated, so he has a second income. He’s an accomplished art thief.

Then comes his golden opportunity. He learns of the location of a priceless painting by Rubens, stolen by the Germans, and currently on the wall of one of his clients. But when he arrives to steal the painting, he discovers there’s far more happening with his darling wife than he suspected. When his partner in crime is murdered, Roger knows that he’s in someone’s crosshairs. There’s a hunter on the trail of the headhunter and Roger is going to need all his wit and speed to save his own skin.

Smart dialogue, intricate plotting, brilliantly conceived characters, perfect pacing. This novel should put Nesbo at the top of any reader’s must-have list.
added by VivienneR | editThe Globe and Mail, Canada, Margaret Cannon (Oct 12, 2011)
 

» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jo Nesboprimary authorall editionscalculated
Bartlett, DonTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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A collision between two vehicles is basic physics.
En kollision mellan två fordon är enkel fysik.
Árekstur tveggja ökutækja lýtur einföldu eðlisfræðilögmáli.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is not part of the Harry Hole series.
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Roger Brown is a corporate headhunter, and he's a master of his profession. But one career simply can't support his luxurious lifestyle and his wife's fledgling art gallery. At an art opening one night he meets Clas Greve, who is not only the perfect candidate for a major CEO job, but also, perhaps, the answer to his financial woes: Greve just so happens to mention that he owns a priceless Peter Paul Rubens painting that's been lost since World War II--and Roger Brown just so happens to dabble in art theft. But when he breaks into Greve's apartment, he finds more than just the painting. And Clas Greve may turn out to be the worst thing that's ever happened to Roger Brown.

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