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The Katharina Code

(William Wisting #12)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  2,720 ratings  ·  306 reviews
The compulsive, gripping thriller from the international bestselling author Jørn Lier Horst . . .

Twenty-four years ago Katharina Haugen went missing.

All she left behind was her husband Martin and a mysterious string of numbers scribbled on a piece of paper.

Every year on October 9th Chief Inspector William Wisting takes out the files to the case he was never abl
Hardcover, 406 pages
Published August 9th 2018 by Michael Joseph (first published August 17th 2017)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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Aug 19, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgalley
Every year on the 9th October Chief Inspector William Wisting carefully scrutinises the cold case files on Katharina Haugen. This is an unsolved missing person case that has come to haunt him. So here he is again 24 years later picking through the evidence, the witness statements, and the code that was discovered in Katharina’s home in her handwriting. Even expert code breakers have been unable to solve it.

Over the years, Wisting and Katharina’s husband Martin have become friends, but there’s st
Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Katharina Code by Jorn Lier Horst is a Norwegian cold case police procedural, a case where 24 years ago, Katharina Haugen disappeared into thin air in Kleiverveien. Detective William Wisting has never been able to let go of the case, and every year on the 11th October anniversary, he reaches for the case files to pore over them to see if anything can be done. He has developed a friendship over the years with Katharina's husband, Martin, who he visits on the day as well. Martin has never got ...more
Louise Wilson
Aug 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Twentyfour years ago, Katharina Haugen, went missing. She left behind her husband, Martin, and a mysterious string of numbers scribbled on a piece of paper. Every year on the 9th October, Cheif Inspector William Wistingtakes out the files to the case he was never able to solve. He stares at the codes he was never able to crack. He visits the husband he was never able to help.

This novel is set between the streets and the dark forests of Norway. It's been twenty four years since Katharina Haugen w
William Wisting has been a cop for a long time. He loves his job but every year on a certain date, he thinks about the one that got away. It’s been 24 years now since Katharina Haugen disappeared & Wisting still has no idea what happened. HIs penance is an annual visit with her husband to shoot the breeze & talk about the case. But this year doesn’t go as planned. Martin Haugen is missing.

Which is ironic because he’s suddenly a popular guy. Wisting gets a call from Adrian Stiller who is with th
Alice (Married To Books)
Received a digital copy for review via NetGalley!

A missing persons case of a girl called Katharina has been unsolved for a total of twenty-four years. On the anniversary date of her disappearance, the chief inspector William Wisting revisits the files to see if he can find the missing pieces to the jigsaw. One strange clue does stand out: a code that no-one up until this point have been able to solve. When another woman goes missing, the hunt is on to crack the code and find the two missing peop
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Aug 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2018
I have read several books in the William Wisting series and I love it! If this is the first time you have ever heard of this series, then I encourage you to go out and find any books you can read. This series by Jørn Lier Horst is excellent and you can without any problem read any of the books as stand-alone.

THE KATHARINA CODE starts with William Wisting going through the Katharina investigation. He does it every year on the same day. The day Katarina disappeared. However, this year will pro
Alex Cantone
Chief Inspector William Wisting of the Telemark police has had a distinguished career. Yet he is haunted by a 24-year old mystery, the disappearance of Katharina Haugen, who left her home, flowers on a table, a coded message, a suitcase packed, and then vanished. The husband was questioned, and every year on the anniversary of her disappearance the two men meet up. Only this year Martin Haugen fails to meet their long-standing arrangement.

Enter Adrian Stiller, an ambitious young detective attach
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have always had great admiration for Jørn Lier Horst and his William Wisting series. A Norwegian homicide detective, Wisting seems able to pace himself through his investigations while always extracting just what is needed at the right time to solve a case and bring the perpetrator to justice. However, there are those cases that slip through the fingers, such as the one of Katharina Haugen. Wisting has never been able to solve it, but pulls out the case files each year on the anniversary of he ...more
Jan 06, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
“The Katharine Code” is different from your typical Scandi crime novel and it’s focused more on the police procedures rather than being dark and brutal. The storyline involving two cold cases was interesting; I liked how two totally different disappearances of young women linked together at the end.

I must say I am a little bit disappointed with how the story progressed. The pace was a little too slow for my liking. I felt that the book was too long at the times and I was missing a twist of some
Michael Cayley
Aug 18, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: crime
24 years ago Katharina Haugen went missing. She was never found. Policeman Wisting remains preoccupied with the case, and has kept up contact with her husband Martin. She had left a sheet of paper with what looks like a code written on it, and which nobody has been able to decipher.

A young ambitious detective is investigating the abduction and murder of a rich man’s daughter a little before Katharina disappeared. He is determined to pin the crime on Martin, and to link the two cases, and to adva
Craig Sisterson
Sep 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: crime, nordic
The hard-drinking, pensive, lone wolf Nordic detective tiptoes the line between trope and cliche, but Norwegian policeman turned award-winning crime writer Jørn Lier Horst steers clear with his family man William Wisting, who refreshingly has a rather more content and positive outlook on life despite the dark deeds he investigates. A widower who is now a grandfather, Wisting has for many years been hauling out old files every October. A case unclosed, unsolved: the bizarre disappearance of Katha ...more
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my goals this year was to explore more Scandi crime and THE KATHARINA CODE is my first of the year. Set in Norway, this follows Chief Inspector William Wisting as he attempts to solve a case that has haunted him for years. 24 years ago Katharina went missing, leaving nothing behind but her husband Martin and a note with some numbers scribbled on it. It becomes known as the Katharina Code and no one has ever been able to break it. Flash forward to present day and Martin has gone missing. N ...more
Elaine Mullane || At Home in Books
I'm having a moment with Nordic Noir at the moment and am taking recommendations!

The Katharina Code is a suspenseful cold case thriller set in the dark forests of Norway. Katharina Haugen haunts Chief Inspector William Wisting. She disappeared twenty-four years before our novel opens, leaving behind her husband, Martin, and a seemingly random string of numbers scribbled on a piece of paper.

Every year on 9th October, Wisting takes out the case file, hoping to finally get a break in the case he c
David Gooch
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I picked this up at the beginning of the year as it was on offer and what a bargain it turned out to be. A really good read that keeps you enthralled all the way through. The added bonus for me was I didn't realise this was a twelfth book in this series so I now have another 11 to read.

This is a story of a detective, William Wisting, who has worked a good few years an has seen many cases but he, like many I suppose, can't stand the ones he couldn't solve. The mysterious disappearance of Katharin
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, 2018
Thoughtful, character-driven crime...

Twenty-four years ago, Katharina Haugen went missing and has never been seen since. She left a partially packed suitcase and a sheet of paper filled with cryptic numbers, the meaning of which has never been discovered. The obvious suspect, her husband Martin, had a cast-iron alibi, and the police have never been able to identify any other suspects. Every year on the anniversary of her disappearance, William Wisting, the detective who investigated the case at
Apr 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I might just have mentioned before that I really, really like Scandi literature. Oh, I have mentioned it? What really? About 500 times? Surely not. 🤣.

Anyhoo. This is the first time I’ve read Jorn Lier Horst and I hadn’t appreciated that the main character features in 11 previous books. It didn’t matter in the slightest, however. I really like William Wisting as a character. He is dogged, determined and intuitive. He is a good family man: a proud grandfather to Amalie and a good father to Lina a
Bruce Hatton
Nov 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: norwegian-crime
This novel centres around a cold case which has haunted Chief Inspector William Wisting for twenty-four years; the disappearance of Katharina Haugen. Wisting has maintained a cordial relationship with Katharina’s husband Martin since his wife went missing and always visits him on the anniversary of her disappearance.
Now new evidence has surfaced which links Martin to the supposed kidnapping of teenage heiress Nadia Krogh who disappeared about two years before Katharina. A ruthless and manipulati
Jun 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Katharina Code is the third William Wisting book that I’ve read and I must say I thoroughly enjoy them. Jørn Lier Horst is a Norwegian author who brings a real credibility to the Scandi Crime genre having worked as a police officer and head of investigations. William Wisting is a credible character whose methodical attention to detail brings authenticity to the role. He is a character with his own set of complexities but these don’t overshadow the story.

This is the first cold case story tha
Emilia Barnes
Competently put together mystery. The thrill comes from seeing all the pieces fall logically but not predictably into place - very satisfying. Nothing too dark or depressing or horrifying. I will certainly look for other books by this author.
Jay Dwight
Sep 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Will Wisting continually revisits a cold case that mystifies him, the disappearance of Katharina Haugen over 20 years ago. He visits her husband Martin each year on the anniversary of her disappearance. But this year, Martin is not at home. Has he now gone missing?
Then a link to Martin turns up in another code case.
Intriguing and compelling.
Tiana Hadnt
Ordinarily I don’t have a problem with slow paced novels. I love intricate character work and as long as said characters are interesting and there’s the little dangling carrot of something slowly being revealed, I’m good to go. Add that to a cold case mystery, and you basically have catnip for me.

On paper, this book is everything I look for. Every year, on October 9, Detective Wisting visits Martin Haugen, whose wife went missing 24 years ago and was never found. It’s the case Wisting can’t let
Elaine Tomasso
Aug 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I would like to thank Netgalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for a review copy of The Katharina Code, the first novel in a quartet of cold cases for Norwegian detective William Wisting.

24 years ago Katharina Haugen disappeared, leaving behind a partially packed suitcase and a list of numbers nobody can decipher. Wisting never gave up on the case, keeps the files at home and regularly visits her husband, Martin on the anniversary of her disappearance. Now, Kripos, the National Police, have lin
Mike Sumner
Aug 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like the adagio of a symphony, The Katharina Code is beautifully written. A slow movement that spans twenty-five years as chief inspector William Wisting revisits the file on missing Katharina Haugen, every year on the anniversary of her disappearance. Wisting and Katharina's husband Martin have become well acquainted over the years, but searches of Martin's house have led them no closer to an answer. Steinar Vassvik lived immediately opposite; he was the closest the police had come to a suspect ...more
Sep 05, 2018 rated it it was ok
24 years ago Katharina disappeared without a trace from the home she shared with her husband. Every year since then the detective on the case checks in with the husband and they've become sort of friends. When the husband is discovered to be missing, this brings the case to the fore again until it's finally resolved. This was okay enough but it dragged quite a bit and it felt like it was never going to get going. ...more
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
My Thanks to Netgalley for an ARC of this novel0 in return for an honest review. I was a bit hesitant starting this book because experience has taught me that with Scandi crime you are never sure what you are getting. But this turned out to be very much my sort of book. I could relax knowing that I was in safe hands. We learn the details of the disappearance of Katharina and the possible murder of Nadia Krogh as the police investigator, Wisting, reads the old police files and back numbers of new ...more
Jan 14, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent addition to the Nordic crime shelves. I found this author by chance, without knowing of the TV adaptation and now I need to read more Wisting adventures!

Some clues were peppered throughout the short chapters but Horst keeps us guessing about the connections until the final quarter of the book.

Wisting himself is of a similar mould to Wallander (widow with adult children and a grandchild) and very persistent with old unsolved cases - a persistence that pays off when two local cold cas
Renita D'Silva
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Loved this one
Eileen Nichol
I love a mystery - suspense, complex characters, atmosphere, maybe a little twist somewhere.
We knew where the story was going from somewhere around the middle. The characters were dull as dishwater and I felt the whole book was lacking in any kind of suspense or atmosphere.
The daughter of Wisting (the main detective) was just plain irritating and their relationship added nothing to the story. Also, how many naps did she put that poor child down for do she could get her laptop out, in order to n
Jan 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great start into my new reading year!

Oct 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Katharina Haugen went missing 24 years ago. The only thing she had left behind for her husband, Martin, were mysterious numbers on a piece of paper. Every year, on the day she went missing, Chief Inspector William Wisting revisits the unsolved case and hopes to crack the code of numbers. He starts the annual ritual by visiting Katharina's husband and then ends the day pouring over the case files. But this year, Martin Haugen is missing as well.  Adrian Stiller is a detective from Oslo who's inve ...more
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Jorn Lier Horst (born in Bamble, Telemark 1970) is a former Senior Investigating Officer at the Norwegian police force. He made his literary debut as a crime writer in 2004 and is considered one of the foremost Nordic crime writers.

His series of mystery novels starring chief inspector William Wisting provides a detailed and authentic insight into how criminal cases are investigated and how it affe

Other books in the series

William Wisting (1 - 10 of 15 books)
  • Nøkkelvitnet (William Wisting, #1)
  • Felicia forsvant (William Wisting, #2)
  • Når havet stilner (William Wisting, #3)
  • Den eneste ene (Wiliam Wisting, #4)
  • Nattmannen (William Wisting, #5)
  • Dregs (William Wisting, #6)
  • Closed for Winter (William Wisting, #7)
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  • Hulemannen (William Wisting, #9)
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