Snowblind by Ragnar Jonasson

29939301  Snowblind is listed as a thriller and Icelandic Noir, but it reads in many ways as a Golden Age mystery with a Noir atmosphere.  Ari Thor is newly assigned to a far northern town in Iceland, just barely below the Arctic circle. It is his first posting as a new police officer and he still has a lot to learn.  Right from the start he is not sure if he has made the right choice in accepting the post.  His girlfriend in Reykjavik doesn’t seem to think so and he wonders how much experience he will really gain in this town where no one locks their doors.

The sense of place  is so well done here, voiced in Ari’s sense of claustrophobia as he experiences it in this village penned in by the sea, the mountains, the snow and ice and also by the descriptions of the scenery and the isolation as the villagers are trapped in their community by an avalanche.  The mystery itself is written more in the style of a classic Golden Age whodunnit than a thriller.  On the whole, this is very well done and an enjoyable read.

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