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Blackout: An Ari Thor Thriller (The Dark…
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Blackout: An Ari Thor Thriller (The Dark Iceland Series) (original 2011; edition 2018)

by Ragnar Jónasson (Author)

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829210,438 (3.48)13
Member:EdGoldberg
Title:Blackout: An Ari Thor Thriller (The Dark Iceland Series)
Authors:Ragnar Jónasson (Author)
Info:Minotaur Books (2018), 272 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:Iceland, Murder

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Blackout by Ragnar Jónasson (2011)

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Showing 1-5 of 9 (next | show all)
Just got bored with it. The writing was so-so. The plot was so-so. ( )
  EdGoldberg | Nov 8, 2018 |
Ragnar J_nasson's "Blackout," translated by Quentin Bates, is set in Iceland in June 2010. Inspector ArÌ_ Thor Arason, his colleague, Hlynur ̍sksson, and their superior, TÌ_mas, keep the peace in the isolated northern town of Siglufj̦rÌ¡ur. One day, a tourist finds the dead body of thirty-four year old ElÌ_as Freysson, who was beaten to death by an unidentified assailant. ArÌ_ Thor and TÌ_mas interview the victim's landlady, friends, and colleagues to find out if Freysson had been involved in anything nefarious. Another central figure is ̍sr̼n, an ambitious reporter whose condescendiing boss treats her dismissively. In spite of him, she is determined to make her mark as a television newswoman.

The novel's tone is desolate. A volcanic eruption has covered the southern part of the country in ash, forcing the residents to breathe in acrid air. In addition, most of the characters are unhappy for one reason or another. TÌ_mas misses his wife, who is studying down south in ReykjavÌ_k; ArÌ_ Thor bitterly regrets his breakup with his ex-girlfriend KristÌ_n, whom he still loves; and Hylnur, who as a child was a vicious bully, is filled with fear and self-loathing, especially since he has begun receiving threatening emails from an anonymous source. Adding to the angst-filled atmosphere, a beautiful woman is brought from Asia to Iceland-- ostensibly to work in a hotel--but gets an unwelcome surprise when she arrives at her destination. There are also a number of flashbacks that shed light on the impact of past events on the present.

This dispiriting tale focuses on some of humanity's most negative traits: selfishness, jealousy, lust, rage, and greed. There are few compassionate individuals to be found in these pages. ArÌ_ Thor is a competent detective, but he is immature and egotistical. In addition, and there are other opportunistic men and women whose first priority is to protect their own interests. JÌ_nasson crams everything into "Blackout" but the kitchen sink. This book's catalog of misery includes rape, suicide, abduction, medical malpractice, serious illness, and child abuse. Too many melodramatic elements, a lack of humor, and an overly cluttered plot make this a dreary and melancholy mystery.
( )
  booklover915 | Oct 9, 2018 |
When a somewhat lost tourist happens across a dead body in a remote area of Iceland, the backwater town's police department is aroused from their personal dramas to investigate. Luckily for them, a savvy journalist is tired of being belittled by her boss and finds a way to cover the story while also doing a bit of her own sleuthing which may bring closure to her own personal issues.
The first portion of this novel seems to focus on the personalities of the flawed characters. The personnel in the PD, network news program as well as the suspects are temperamental, lovelorn, bullies, vindictive and damaged individuals, some seek redemption. It's actually quite tiresome and whiny.
The second portion contains a little more action and interesting story lines bring it all together and comes to a satisfactory conclusion.
This appears to be the sequel to Snowblind, which I've not read, and has been translated to English for September, 2018 publication.
Thank you NetGalley, Ragnar Jonasson and publisher for the opportunity to read and review this novel. ( )
  Carmenere | Sep 9, 2018 |
A man found beaten in his apartment provides a policeman and a reporter with an opportunity to investigate. The book, however, focuses more on personal issues than on the investigation. I never really got a feel for the book. I finished it aboard a plane about a week ago, and the details no longer stand out. I never really warmed to either the policeman or the journalist. The book is unremarkable and not memorable. I received an advance electronic copy from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  thornton37814 | May 8, 2018 |
I have read all of the other books in the series and I am looking forward to the next one! It's summer this time in Iceland, but the atmosphere is still oppressive, as volcano ash has been covering the skies. Ari Thor is settling into his job in the north of Iceland, but still regrets breaking up with his girlfriend. He is not quite at the forefront in this investigation, which seems to be a collaborative effort between different police forces and a journalist determined to make her mark. We are introduce to a variety of people and voices, get to see a diversity of point of views. All in all a very enjoyable read! ( )
  Hanneri | Mar 23, 2017 |
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On a tranquil fjord in Northern Iceland, a man is brutally beaten to death on a bright summer's night. As the 24 hour light of the arctic summer is transformed into darkness by an ash cloud from a recent volcanic eruption, a young reporter leaves Reykajvik to investigate on her own, unaware that an innocent person's life hangs in the balance.… (more)

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