Daybreak

You know what it’s like when you read the next book by an author you like very much, there is always that little shiver of excitement at the good read to come… and another little shiver of anxiety in case the new book isn’t as good as the ones you’ve read before.

I’ve had disappointments like that with Reg Hill, whose books about the Yorkshire detectives Pascoe and Dalziel I enjoyed very much, each one better than the previous then suddenly – bam! There was one which I not only didn’t enjoy but I didn’t think was as good! Luckily the ones which came later seemed to be back on the form I loved… although towards the end of the series my interest tailed away. Ditto with Graham Hurley and his Joe Farraday series; I haven’t read the latest Jimmy Perez novel by Ann Cleeves, so I am hopeful I will enjoy it more than the previous one.

So… I have just finished reading Daybreak by Viktor Arnar Ingólfsson, having been utterly hooked by The Flatey Enigma and House of Evidence. Ingólfsson is an Icelandic writer and I am a great fan… so Daybreak… did I enjoy it? Was I gripped? Did I close the book with a great sigh of satisfaction? YES I DID!

I won’t spoil your enjoyment by telling you much about it except to say that unlike the other two I mentioned, it is set in the present, and although there were mysteries, puzzles and murder in the other two, they were not what I would describe as a traditional police procedural… which Daybreak is. The theme is hunting, and it starts with a crime where a stalker is stalked, becomes prey rather than hunter. The story follows the police investigation with many twists and turns, strong and interesting characters, wonderful descriptions of the settings  which do not distract from the narrative but set it into the rugged scenery of Iceland. Once again I was so absorbed in the book, I couldn’t stop reading it, I had to know the answer, I had to know who would be a victim, if anyone was, on the edge of my seat because I was so engaged with the characters I really cared whether they escaped and survived, or whether…

A really excellent book… I’m only sorry that there are no more by him translated into English! Oh, and by the way, another excellent translation by Andrew Cauthery and Björg Árnadóttir!

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