Blackout (Dark Iceland 3)– Ragnar Jónasson


Blackout (Dark Iceland 3)– Ragnar Jónasson

The Last Word Review

The Icelandic crime writer Ragnar Jónasson is back with Blackout the third book in the Dark Iceland series. Anyone who has read Snowblind and Nightblind will know of his leading character the detective Ari Thor. Well fans can rejoice as he is back. One thing to note here that Blackout is actually the second of the three books. But this in no way detracts from the plots.


I have to admit that I am a huge fan of Icelandic writing and with Jónasson he creates a setting that only the best nordic crime writer can. The setting the bleakness and cold of the Icelandic winters makes for a dramatic plot. But in Blackout the setting is the Icelandic summer, albeit a short summer. Set against the backdrop of the volcanic eruptions that are darkening the summer skyline. Now setting into life based in the remote town of Siglufjörður. Life can be lonely for Ari Thor his girlfriend reluctant to relocate so at times he comes across as moody and dark.

As the Volcanic action darkens the skies and the mood this creates in turn quite a dark chilling atmosphere even in the summer months and also for the plot. Ari Thor has now been drafted in to investigate a brutal murder after a body was discovered by an American tourist. The great thing about Blackout is the style of writing and the rich variety of characters the reader gets introduced to. Somewhere in here could lie the key suspect? There are many twists and turns in this story that is so rich that it manages to hook the reader from the start and remember this is actually the second book of the three and that is quite an accomplishment. There is something so unique as a thriller based within a small community Ireland like Iceland that can deliver a classic crime novel.

Lookout for an interesting female reporter who gives quite a performance in Blackout and somewhat different in her approach than Ari. I thought this gave quite a balance to the investigation as a whole.

If you are new to Ragnar Jónasson’s writing my advice is go out and treat yourself to all three in the series and get to know a writer that has quite a following and is also award winning. You will be gripped by all three books and many will be booking trips to visit Iceland and the places made famous in Snowblind, Nightblind and now Blackout.

Thank you to Karen at Orenda Books for the review copy.

Blackout by Ragnar Jónasson is published by Orenda Books and is available through Waterstones and all good bookshops.