The haunting book before Black Skies and Outrage, that sets Erlendur off on the journey that is to be told in Strange Shores. You might as well skip the next two books and go straight to Strange Shores from this one as they add nothing to the story that is to unfold after while both Hypothermia and Strange Shores will stay with you for some time to come.
Ok so I am already stupidly excited about the fact we are having a trip away, simply because it has almost (and will have been by the time we go) been three years since the Boyfriend and I actually left the country*, and this break away to Iceland for IcelandNoir, is an unexpected trip abroad.
But there are plenty of other reasons I am looking forward to going too. On the personal side there are several good friends of mine who will also be there, and the chance to spend even a few hours sat with a drink, or maybe a meal, just chatting away will be fabulous, due to the fact that I don’t get to see any of them on a regular basis as they all live in Yorkshire or above, and it’s a bit of a trek from the cotswolds to see them.
On the fanboi side, there is Arnaldur Indridason, for a start. I have loved his books since I first read Silence of the Grave his second Detective Erlendur novel a couple of years ago and his latest book Strange Shores simply blew me away. ( You can find my review of it for CrimeSquad Here in the November reviews) Whilst no fanboi moment I have again in my life will live up to the moment I got to meet Stan Lee, I’m quite sure that meeting Indridason, will be up there in my top ten author moments.
Then of course there is the bucket list. Not for me per se, but certainly for the other half. Visiting Reykjavik has been on his bucket list for quite some time as has seeing the Northern Lights (aurora borialis) which is an amazing sight, and certainly something everyone should see once in their lifetime given the opportunity, and we have a trip out to look for them while we are there.
Then there is everything else that we are going to try and fit in during the rest of the time we are there. Ooh, it’s going to be fun, and yes I can’t wait.
*no our recent trips to Scotland and Wales don’t count!
Black skies sees another book in the Reykyavik series without its main character of Erlendur and so this time focuses on Sigurdor Oli, and his investigations into the murder of woman who had been trying to blackmail an acquaintance of one of his friends.
The tale runs concurrently with the investigation of Elinborg in the previous book Outrage, which was an interesting concept I’ve seen done often on TV with certain linked shows, rather than in a novel.
I found this a slower read than Outrage, but I think that is because I really dislike the awful, slightly lazy and completely snobbish character of Sigurdir Oli, which is a true testament to Indridason’s writing talent.
The plot was as complex as ever, and what I like about these books, is that the writing style seems almost simplistic as it is so easy to read, but simplistic is exactly the one thing that it isn’t at all.
With Iceland noir fast approaching, I have been catching up on my Arnaldur Indridason books, as he is the Guest of Honour for this inaugural festival.
I have, however skipped a couple of novels for a couple of reasons. I stopped reading his books a while ago as at the time I was having a serious Scandinavian / Nordic phase and (Camilla Läckberg, Jo Nesbø etc) was beginning to get my characters confused, so the last one I read was book four, The Draining lake, which I loved.
That, and that I realised that he is now on book nine, and whilst I am a fairly prolific reader, with the increasing number of books I have to read, I wouldn’t get to through them all before we head to his homeland.
Hence I have just finished book 7….
This is the first of Arnaldur Indridasons Reykjavik series that I have read that doesn’t feature his main detective Erlandur. I was surprised at first thinking it may not be as good, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. I read the book in a weekend and loved the way I got to see and understand so much more of Elinborg as both a policeman and a person.
As complex as ever, all the way through I was convinced that I has sussed out who did it and why, only to find I couldn’t have been further from the truth.
It’s a great read, and whilst making me keen to catch up to book 9 I also can’t wait to go back and read the two books I have skipped.