Jo Nesbø

The Norwegian author and musician Jo Nesbø is in town, he is on a book tour because a new translation has just appeared in German. There was a good crowd that showed up in Babylon to hear him read and speak, and to hear Jochen Krol, who is apparently a famous German actor.

Or at least he was introduced as such: "Jochen Krol needs no introduction!". Oops, yes he does. I have no idea who he is or what he has played. Just looked him up on the Wikipedia. There is a guy there called Joachim Król who looks a lot like the guy who was on the stage, so I guess its him. Ah, okay, he's the detective in the Donna Leon films.

Anyway, he has a great voice. It was so great to close you eyes and listen to them read. Jo read a few pages in Norwegian. I realized that I read Norwegian with a Swedish accent, I picked out some words here and there, but not the sentences. Joachim did three longish pieces, and then left us hanging on a cliff, meaning people had to go out and buy the book. I have so much to read, I figure I'll wait for paperback.

Nesbø is a great storyteller. Let's see if I can recall a few:

  • The dog - in this book there is a made-up race of dog that is described in detail. People keep hounding a Norwegian dog expert for more information on this race of dog and to find out where they can be purchases. So the expert calls, and Nesbø tells him that it is just a made -up race. The expert is angry at him.
  • His Russian translator calls:
    - Jo, I will be in Norway, can I come to visit you? (They are speaking English).
    - Sure, why are you coming to Norway?
    - Well, I am taking a Norwegian course.
    - Um, aren't you my translator into Russian?
    - Yes, I translate with a dictionary. But it is from 1957 and actually a Swedish dictionary. So I want to learn some modern Norwegian!
  • One of his past books involves a plot to kidnap the Crown Prince. Someone in the audience asks if the court ever responded to the book. No, Nesbø says, but he met the Prime Minister when they were waiting to go on a talk show together. The Prime Minister said that he really liked that book, even though it got him into a bit of a spot. He was in an audience with the king and was making small talk. The king asked him what he was currently reading, and he answered that he was reading this great crime story. "What's it about?" asks the king. The prime minister realizes that he is about to put his foot in his mouth and hurriedly changes the subject, he is, after all, a seasoned politician.

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