Dark Iceland #1 | 300 Pages | 2015
Snowblind at a Glance
- Overall Rating: ★★★1/2
- Dude: Fuckboy cop
- Setting: I wanna go!
- Mystery: meh
- Brutality: Literal knife in the back
Pairs Well With
Whatever Hrolfur has in his flask
I saw a review of book 3 in this series about a year ago and decided that I had to read these. I have never been to Iceland, but have wanted to go for a while. It’s a gorgeous country. Also, it’s really fun to read books that have been translated into English. I love reading about other places from the people who actually live there and know the customs. My favorite part of the book was Ari Thór reminiscing about Christmas Eve and the tradition of giving a book and staying up all night to read it. I’m going to honor that tradition in the US from now on because it’s beautiful.
Ari Thór is about to graduate from Police Officer school in Reykjavík. He lives there with his girlfriend, who is in medical school when he receives an offer of employment in a small northern town called Siglufjörður. Only a tunnel leads to town and there is no daylight between November and January. Sounds like a perfect place for crime right? It’s really a sleepy little town where you will always be an out-of-towner unless you were born there.
While I have seen this classified as a thriller, it is more like an old mystery novel. A famous novelist is found dead and only Ari Thór seems to think there is foul play. So was this a murder or is the brand new cop just trying to find his first crime to solve?
It was fun to read a detective novel where the detective is so new that he is a little bit of a bumbling fool. Ari Thór tries so hard at everything that he doesn’t stop to look around. He is the most Gryffindor character I have probably ever read! I enjoyed seeing the older cops try and get him to slow down and stop running headfirst into everything. Not that it works…
Honestly, it felt like the mysteries in the book took a backseat to Ari Thór’s life and the drama he makes up in his head. He is incredibly self-involved and I wanted to reach in and slap him a few times. But mostly, he is just REAL. He is human and that is evidenced by his haphazard way of dealing with romance. He is an immature little boy with his romantic relationships, but that only makes him more real. It’s a little like watching a car wreck and being unable to do anything about it.
What I really appreciate about this story is that all of the tiny things that seemed to just be background information were very important at the end. I spent the book thinking that there was no way to predict who the possible criminal(s) were, but it was actually right there if you put the clues together. I loved that piece of the story because I want a story that I can solve, but not predict.
Finally, the structure of the story was different. We get flashbacks to a mysterious woman who is being attacked. These scenes are planted in minor context throughout the story and seemingly have no connection. But they do in the end and I think that they will play a larger part in the series as a whole. I need to look that up, but I think that is the direction that the story is going.
If you like a good armchair mystery pick this one up!
Have you read Snowblind? Let me know what you thought in the comments!