RAGNAR JÓNASSON

Icelandic writer of crime fiction, best known for the international bestselling Dark Iceland series and the Hidden Iceland series.

 

Biography

Ragnar Jónasson was born in 1976 in Reykjavík, where he works as a writer and a lawyer. He teaches copyright law at Reykjavík University. He has previously worked as a TV news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service and he is the co-funder of the Reykjavik international crime writing festival Iceland Noir. From the age of seventeen, he translated fourteen of Agatha Christie’s novels and was much influenced by her strengths in setting and plotting. His first crime fiction novel was published in 2009 and became a commercial success. The novels in his Dark Iceland series are all set in Siglufjörður, the northernmost town in Iceland, which was home to his father and grandparents.
Read more about the author and his books at his own website.

Books

The Dark Iceland series is set in and around Siglufjörður, a quiet fishing village in Northern Iceland, accessible only via a small mountain tunnel. The main character of the series is Ari Thór Arason: a young policeman on his first posting.

Snowblind (Dark Iceland #1)
2015
Translated by Quentin Bates
Original title: Snjóblinda (2010)
A young woman is found murdered and lying half-naked in the snow and a highly esteemed, elderly writer falls to his death in the local theatre. Ari, a young policeman on his first post is dragged straight into the heart of a community where he can trust no one. An avalanche and unremitting snowstorms close the mountain pass, and the 24-hour darkness threatens to push Ari over the edge, as his investigation becomes increasingly complex, chilling and personal.

Nightblind (Dark Iceland #2)
2015
Translated by Quentin Bates
Original title: Náttblinda (2014)
The events of Nightblind take place approximately five years after Snowblind, when the peace of the close-knit community of Siglufjörður is shattered by the murder of a policeman – shot at point-blank range in a deserted house. The dark arctic winter is closing in and with a killer on the loose Ari Thór has to act fast to solve a puzzle that involves tangled local politics, a compromised new mayor and a psychiatric ward in Reykjavik where someone is being held against their will…

Blackout (Dark Iceland #3)
2016
Translated by Quentin Bates
Original title: Myrknætti (2011)
On the shores of 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. Ari Thór and his colleagues on the tiny police force in Siglufjörður struggle with the case, while their own serious personal problems push them to the limit. What secrets does the dead man harbour, and what is the young reporter hiding?
The events in Blackout take place in June 2010, following the events of Snowblind.

Rupture (Dark Iceland #4)
2016
Translated by Quentin Bates
Original title: Rof (2012)
In 1955 two young couples moved to the uninhabited, isolated fjord of Hedinsfjörður. Their stay ended abruptly when one of the women died in mysterious circumstances. The case was never solved, but fifty years later an old photograph comes to light, and it becomes clear that the couples may not have been alone on the fjord after all. Now Ari Thór must try to piece together what really happened that fateful night.

Whiteout (Dark Iceland #5)
2017
Translated by Quentin Bates
Original title: Andköf (2013)
Two days before Christmas, a young woman is found dead beneath the cliffs of the deserted village of Kálfshamarvík. Did she jump, or did something more sinister take place beneath the lighthouse and the abandoned old house?
With winter closing in and the snow falling relentlessly, Ari Thór discovers that the victim’s mother and young sister also lost their lives in this same spot, twenty-five years earlier. As the dark history and the secrets of the village are unveiled, he must race against the clock to find the killer, before another tragedy takes place.

The Hidden Iceland series is set in Reykjavik, in the Icelandic highlands, in an isolated fjord and on a picturesque but inaccessible island. The main character is Hulda Hermannsdóttir, a female detective, whom you get to know through the three books.

The Darkness (Hidden Iceland series book 1)
2018
Translated by Victoria Cribb
Original title: Dimma (2015)
A young woman, who was looking for asylum, is found dead on remote seaweed-covered rocks and a hasty police investigation determines her death as suicide. When Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsdóttir of the Reykjavik police is forced into early retirement, she is told she can investigate one last cold case of her choice – and she knows which one. What she discovers is far darker than expected. This was not the only young woman who disappeared around that time…

The Island (Hidden Iceland series book 2)
2019
Translated by Victoria Cribb
Original title: Drungi (2016)
This is the second thrilling book in Ragnar Jonasson’s Hidden Iceland trilogy. This time Hulda is at the peak of her career and is sent to investigate what happened on Elliðaey after a group of friends visited but one failed to return. Could this have links to the disappearance of a couple ten years previously out on the Westfjords? Is there a killer stalking these barren outposts?

The Mist (Hidden Iceland series book 3)
Will be published in Spring 2019
Translated by
Original title:Mistur(2017)