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Anne Holt books in order

Anne Holt is a Norwegian journalist, lawyer, politician and author of mystery, thriller and crime fiction novels.

Born in Larvik, Norway, she studied law at the University of Oslo, where she partially financed her studies by working as a news reporter for the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation.

Upon graduating, she continued working as a TV journalist before later joining the Norwegian Police Force, where she served as a police attorney for the Oslo region.

Holt then returned to journalism before later starting her own law firm.

She also served as Norway’s Minister for Justice from 1996 to 1997.

As an author, Holt made her debut in 1993 with The Blind Goddess (Blind gudinne) the first book in the Hanne Wilhelmsen Series.

Regarded as one of the most accomplished Scandinavian crime writers, her novels have been translated and sold millions of copies across the globe.

More about Anne Holt

Genres: Crime Suspense, Mystery, Thriller

Born: 1958



Hanne Wilhelmsen

  1. The Blind Goddess - Blind gudinne (1993)
  2. Blessed Are Those Who Thirst - Salige er de som tørster (1993)
  3. Death of the Demon - Demonens død (1995)
  4. The Lion's Mouth - Løvens gap (1997)
  5. Dead Joker - Død Joker (1999)
  6. No Echo - Uten ekko (2000)
  7. Beyond the Truth - Sannheten bortenfor (2003)
  8. 1222 - 1222 (2007)
  9. Odd Numbers - Offline (2015)
  10. In Dust and Ashes - I støv og aske (2016)

Selma Falck

  1. A Grave for Two - En grav for to (2018)
  2. A Necessary Death - Furet/værbitt (2020)
  3. A Memory for Murder - Mandela-effekten (2021)

Vik and Stubo

  1. What Is Mine - Det som er mitt (2001)
  2. The Final Murder - Det som aldri skjer (2004)
  3. Death in Oslo - Presidentens valg (2006)
  4. Fear Not - Pengemannen (2008)
  5. What Dark Clouds Hide - Skyggedød (2012)

Detailed book overview

Hanne Wilhelmsen

The Blind Goddess

A small-time drug dealer is found battered to death on the outskirts of the Norwegian capital, Oslo. A young Dutchman, walking aimlessly in central Oslo covered in blood, is taken into custody but refuses to talk. When he is informed that the woman who discovered the body, Karen Borg, is a lawyer, he demands her as his defender, although her specialty is civil, not criminal, law.

A couple of days later another lawyer is found shot to death. Soon police officers Håkon Sand and Hanne Wilhelmsen establish a link between the two killings. They also find a coded message hidden in the murdered lawyer’s apartment. Their maverick colleague in the drugs squad, Billy T., reports that a recent rumor in the drug underworld involves drug-dealing lawyers. Now the reason why the young Dutchman insisted on having Karen Borg as a defender slowly dawns on them: since she was the one to find and report the body, she is the only Oslo lawyer that cannot be implicated in the crime.

As the officers investigate, they uncover a massive network of corruption leading to the highest levels of government. As their lives are threatened, Hanne and her colleagues must find the killer and, in the process, bring the lies and deception out into the open.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Blind gudinne
First Release: 1993
ISBN: 978-1451634761
Publisher: Scribner
Blessed Are Those Who Thirst

IT is only the beginning of May but in Oslo a brutal heat wave has coincided with an alarming increase in violent crime. In the latest instance, police investigator Hanne Wilhelmsen is sent to a macabre crime scene on the outskirts of town. 

An abandoned shed is covered in blood. On one wall an eight-digit number is written in blood. There is no body—nor any sign of a victim. Is it a kid’s prank or foul play? Is it even human blood?

As more bloody numbers are found in isolated locations throughout Oslo, Hanne’s colleague Håkon Sand makes a startling discovery: the digits correspond to the filing numbers of foreign immigrants. All are female, all are missing. Is there a serial killer on the loose in Oslo? How does the killer have access to immigrant data?

Meanwhile, as the trail heats up, the victim of a horrific unsolved rape case and her father have each decided to take justice into their own hands. Hanne and Håkon soon discover that they aren’t the only ones on the hunt for the killer.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Salige er de som tørster
First Release: 1993
ISBN: 978-1451634785
Publisher: Scribner
Death of the Demon

In a foster home outside Oslo, a twelve-year-old boy is causing havoc. The institution’s steely director, Agnes Vestavik, sees something chilling in Olav’s eyes: sheer hatred. When Vestavik is found murdered at her desk, stabbed in the back with an Ikea kitchen knife—with Olav nowhere to be found—the case goes to maverick investigator Hanne Wilhelmsen, recently promoted to chief inspector in the Oslo Police.

Could the child be a murderer? As police canvass the city for Olav, Hanne, working alongside the foulmouthed detective Billy T., orders an investigation of the home’s employees. But despite her supreme deductive skills, she is hopeless at delegating, hopeless at pooling information, hopeless at sharing responsibilities. Can Hanne learn to trust others before her bullheaded instincts lead her astray—in the workplace and on the home front?

Meanwhile, Olav makes his way through the city, looking for the mother who was forced to consign him to the state’s care. A dark and captivating new chapter in this brilliant, rollicking series, Death of the Demon examines that murky intersection between crime and justice.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Demonens død
First Release: 1995
ISBN: 978-1451634808
Publisher: Scribner
The Lion's Mouth

Less than six months after taking office, the Norwegian Prime Minister is found dead. She has been shot in the head. Was it a politically motivated assassination or personal revenge?

Hanne Wilhelmsen, chief inspector of the Oslo police, is on leave in California, but when the death shakes the country to its core, she knows she can’t remain on the sidelines of such a crucial investigation. The hunt for the Prime Minister’s killer is complicated, intense, and grueling. 

When secrets begin to unravel from the Prime Minister’s past, Hanne and her partner, Billy T., must solve the crime before a private tragedy becomes a public scandal in the most sensitive case of their careers.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Løvens gap
First Release: 1997
ISBN: 978-1501123245
Publisher: Scribner
Dead Joker

Chief Public Prosecutor Sigurd Halvorsrud’s wife is found dead in front of the fireplace in the family living room. The cause of death: she has been brutally decapitated. Her husband, who witnessed the grisly murder and is himself covered in blood, immediately falls under suspicion, though he claims his wife’s killer was Ståle Salvesen, a man he’d prosecuted years before. 

Detective Inspector Hanne Wilhelmsen is called in to lead the investigation with her old colleague, Billy T. Despite the circumstantial evidence, Hanne is unconvinced of Sigurd Halvorsrud’s guilt—that is, until a witness says he saw Ståle Salvesen commit suicide by jumping off a bridge days before the murder took place. Then a journalist at one of Oslo's largest newspapers is found beheaded. What links these two horrifically violent crimes?

The demanding investigation soon clashes with a terrible crisis in Hanne’s personal life. Cecilie, the woman she has lived with for almost twenty years, has fallen seriously ill and doesn’t have much time to live.

With a savage killer on the loose, Hanne must ask herself: Is the truth worth chasing at all costs?

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Død Joker
First Release: 1999
ISBN: 978-0857892294
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
No Echo

On a cold December evening, celebrity chef Brede Ziegler is discovered stabbed to death on the steps of Oslo’s police headquarters, sending a shock wave through the city’s hip in-crowd. Chef Ziegler had many famous associates and more than a few enemies among them. Was his murder a random act of violence or did someone want him dead? 

Police investigator Billy T. is stymied by conflicting information about the kind of man Ziegler was. It seems nobody really knew him: not his glamorous wife, his business partner, nor the editor of his memoir-in-progress. The case is hopeless until Hanne Wilhelmsen returns to Oslo after a six-month stay in Italy and teams up with Billy T. Working together, they are pulled deep into the nefarious world inhabited by Ziegler. Was he at all the chef he claimed to be? And can those who knew him be trusted?

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Uten ekko
First Release: 2000
ISBN: 978-1501123368
Publisher: Scribner
Beyond the Truth

Shortly before Christmas, Hanne Wilhelmsen, Chief Inspector of the Norwegian Police, is called to the scene of multiple murders. Four people are found shot dead at the home of the wealthy Stahlberg family: shipping merchants and notorious for family disputes and lawsuits. Three of the dead are members of the family, and the fourth victim is an undistinguished author, seemingly out of place. A bottle of champagne had been opened but not drunk. What was the cause for celebration?

As Hanne and her long-time police partner, Billy T., investigate, they unearth many motives for the murders; each surviving member of the Stahlberg family had good reason to want the victims dead. But Hanne doesn’t believe that the full story has been revealed, and she concentrates her efforts on discovering why the author was at the home of one of Oslo’s richest families. As Hanne draws closer to the truth, she will once again risk everything for justice. But this time, will she pay the ultimate price?

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Sannheten bortenfor
First Release: 2003
ISBN: 978-0857892317
Publisher: Atlantic Books

1222 is the story of how a small group of people find themselves stuck in a hotel during an apocalyptic snow storm. Following a dramatic train derailment at Finse, the conflict between the survivors escalates while a furious hurricane threatens the unprotected village. 

Nobody is there to help, and there is no way out of the inferno for the survivors hiding out. On the first night at the hotel, a man is found shot and murdered. The victim is Cato Hammer, a priest known nation-wide for his ability – and desire – to get in the papers. 

Hanne Wilhelmsen, retired Inspector at the Oslo Police, is drawn into a race against time, a murderer, and the worst storm in the Norwegian alps on record. She loses the first round. Soon, another one of God’s servants is murdered, when an icicle cuts through his body…

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: 1222
First Release: 2007
ISBN: 978-1848876095
Publisher: Corvus
Odd Numbers

On an early April afternoon, a bomb goes off in the Islamic Cooperation Council’s offices in Oslo, killing twenty-three people. The Police and Security Service suspect an extremist organization to be responsible for the attack, a suspicion that grows stronger when threats of yet another, bigger explosion during the planned celebration of the Norwegian constitution reach the authorities.

As a special adviser on cold cases, Hanne Wilhelmsen has cut all of her official ties to the Security Service and lives contentedly—or at least as contentedly as someone like her can manage—in solitude with her partner Nesir and their young daughter. A small computer monitor is Hanne's only window to the outside until the day of the attacks, when her closed-off world is broken open. Hanne is approached by her long lost friend, Billy T., whose son Linus has undergone some disturbing changes recently. As the mood of the city darkens, Hanne tries to help Billy T. reach out to Linus and realizes that Oslo is up against forces far more terrible and menacing than ever before.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Offline
First Release: 2015
ISBN: 978-1451634747
Publisher: Scribner
In Dust and Ashes

Police investigator Kjell Bonsaksen is a contented man in most areas of life, but for one mistake he made years ago that has rankled like a stone in his shoe ever since: in 2001, a two-year-old girl was killed by a speeding car while playing in the road in front of her home. 

The marriage of the toddler’s grief-stricken parents dissolved in the wake of the accident, and not long thereafter, the girl’s mother died under mysterious circumstances. The girl’s father, Jonas, was convicted of his ex-wife’s murder and sentenced to twelve years in prison. But Kjell Bonsaksen knew he was innocent.

Now it’s 2016, and Kjell is looking forward to his retirement to the French countryside with his wife. An uncomfortable chance encounter with Jonas at a roadside gas station prompts him to dig out Jonas’s case files for Detective Henrik Holme, the resident cold case prodigy. Henrik doesn’t take long to convince his beloved mentor, Hanne Wilhelmsen, that Jonas was wrongly convicted for his ex-wife’s murder. 

As their investigation evolves, Hanne and Henrik uncover eerie connections to the recent suicide of a right-wing extremist blogger whose fanatic ideologies seem incompatible with a desire to die.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: I støv og aske
First Release: 2016
ISBN: 978-1501174797
Publisher: Scribner

Selma Falck

A Grave for Two

Selma Falck's personal life and career as a lawyer have hit rock bottom. That is until Hege Chin Morell - Norway's best female skier - approaches her desperate to overturn a doping charge. With two months to the Winter Olympics, Selma faces the seemingly almost impossible task of clearing Morell's name.

However, when a male skier is found dead after a training accident, it becomes clear to Selma that there is something more serious at risk. Encountering corruption, hidden enmity and shady connections, the pattern of recent crimes and ancient sins becomes undeniable. As Selma's race against time begins, she realizes that more lives are at stake....

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: En grav for to
First Release: 2018
ISBN: 978-1786498519
Publisher: Corvus
A Necessary Death

The snow is falling

Selma Falck is living a nightmare. Trapped in a burning cabin on a freezing snow-covered mountain, she has no idea where she is or how she got there. Bruised, bleeding and naked, she barely makes it out in time as the flames engulf the cabin. With no signs of human habitation nearby, the temperature rapidly dropping, and a blizzard approaching, how will she survive?

She's lost in the wilderness

As Selma fights the cold, the hunger and her own wounds, she eventually forms a frightening picture of the past six months. Not only does she have to find a way to stay alive, she needs to make it back to civilization, quickly. Murder has been committed, and a great injustice must be stopped. The very future of the nation itself is at stake...

If the cold doesn't kill her, they will...

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Furet/værbitt
First Release: 2020
ISBN: 978-1786498540
Publisher: Corvus
A Memory for Murder

When former high-powered lawyer turned PI Selma Falck is shot and her oldest friend, a junior MP, is killed in a sniper attack, everyone - including the police - assume that Selma was the * target.

But when two other people with connections to the MP are also found murdered, it becomes clear that there is a wider conspiracy at play.

As Selma sets out to avenge her friend's death, and discover the truth behind the conspiracy, her own life is threatened once again. Only this time, the danger may be closer to home than she could possibly have realized...

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Mandela-effekten
First Release: 2021
ISBN: 978-1786498564
Publisher: Corvus

Vik and Stubo

What Is Mine

All over Oslo, children are disappearing.

One afternoon after school, nine-year-old Emilie doesn't come home. After a frantic search, her father finds her backpack in a deserted alley. A week later, a five-year-old boy goes missing. And then another.

Meanwhile, Johanne Vik, a former FBI profiler, is buried in crimes of the past, trying to get to the heart of a decades-old false murder conviction that's been keeping her up at night. But Police Commissioner Adam Stubo, who's haunted by his own demons, sees her as his only chance at unlocking this deadly pattern. Johanne resists at first, but when the bodies of the missing children start appearing in their family's homes with notes that say, "You got what you deserved," she decides to help.

While the Norwegian media is out hunting pedophiles, Stubo and Vik feel that the truth may be a larger, more complex story of revenge, one they're desperate to uncover before time runs out.

NB: This book is also known as Punishment.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Det som er mitt
First Release: 2001
ISBN: 978-0446178181
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
The Final Murder

All over Oslo, celebrities are turning up dead in the most macabre of situations: a talk show host with her tongue cut out, a politician crucified with a copy of the Koran stuffed up her private parts, a literary critic stabbed in the eye. It's clear that the killer seeks some sort of retribution, but for what?

Adam Stubo and Johanna Vik, recently new parents, are reluctantly drawn into the investigation. As Stubo leads the inquiry, Johanna is exhausted by the new baby. But she is haunted by a pattern she discovers from a time long ago when she was in the FBI, a time she has tried to forget . . . and time is running out to stop the killer from completing this chilling series of murders.

NB: This book is also known as What Never Happens.

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Det som aldri skjer
First Release: 2004
ISBN: 978-1848876149
Publisher: Corvus
Death in Oslo

When Helen Barclay becomes the first female US president, the whole world takes notice. And unfortunately for President Barclay, one man takes very particular notice. He knows her darkest secret, buried for over twenty years. And not only does he have the power to destroy everything she's worked for, but he also has the ultimate motive. Revenge. 

Unfortunately for the FBI and the Norwegian police, nobody knows about this when Helen Barclay chooses to visit Norway for her first state visit. But when she goes missing from a locked, heavily secured bedroom, they are forced - unwillingly - to work together to find her. Has she been kidnapped? Murdered? Can the US president really just disappear into thin air...?

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Presidentens valg
First Release: 2006
ISBN: 978-0751537161
Publisher: Little, Brown
Fear Not

A drug addict dead in a basement, a young asylum seeker floating in the harbour, a high profile female bishop stabbed to death in the street. What is the connection?

During a snowy Christmas season in Norway, criminal psychologist and profiler Inger Johanne Vik finds not only her husband and herself but also her autistic daughter drawn into the investigation of a number of disturbing deaths. Her husband, detective Yngvar StubA , has been dispatched to Bergen to investigate the shocking Christmas Eve murder of a local female bishop.

Meanwhile, in Oslo, dead bodies keep turning up, though the causes of death vary. Before long, Inger Johanne will incredulously discover something that will link them all. Anne Holt's Fear Not is a thrilling crime novel that raises questions about religion, human rights, and the very nature of love itself.

NB: This book is also known as Modus.

Modus (TV Series)
Director: Lisa Siwe
Cast: Melinda Kinnaman, Henrik Norlén, Esmeralda Struwe, Simon J. Berger, Annika Hallin, Gerhard Hoberstorfer, Lily Wahlsteen, Greg Wise, Marek Oravec, Samuel Fröler, Anja Lundqvist
Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Pengemannen
First Release: 2008
ISBN: 978-0857895042
Publisher: Corvus
What Dark Clouds Hide

On a summer's day, Johanne Vik arrives at the home of her friends Jon and Ellen Mohr and is greeted by a scene of devastation: their young son, left unattended, has tragically fallen to his death. Meanwhile, Oslo is under attack. An explosion has torn the city apart, and newly qualified police officer Henrik Holme is the only one available to attend the Mohr household.

As Holme investigates, he casts doubt on the claim that the death was a tragic accident and calls upon Johanne's profiling expertise to understand what really happened. But neither realise that those involved are determined to hide the truth - no matter what. Before the summer is over, more shocking deaths will occur....

Author: Anne Holt
Original Title: Skyggedød
First Release: 2012
ISBN: 978-1848876187
Publisher: Corvus