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The Island

Hidden Iceland Series, Book 2
Narrated by: Amanda Redman
Series: Hidden Iceland, Book 2
Length: 6 hrs and 32 mins
4 out of 5 stars (21 ratings)

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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of The Island, by Ragnar Jónasson, read by Amanda Redman.   

Four friends visit the island.   

But only three return.... 

Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsdóttir is sent to the isolated island of Elliðaey to investigate and soon finds haunting similarities with a previous case - a young woman found murdered 10 years ago in the equally desolate Westfjords.   

Is there a patient killer stalking these barren outposts?   

As Hulda navigates a sinister game constructed of smoke and mirrors she is convinced that no one is telling the truth, including those closest to her.   

But who will crack first? And what secrets is the island hiding?   

Haunting, suspenseful and as chilling as an Icelandic winter, The Island follows one woman's journey to find the truth hidden in the darkest shadows and shine a light on her own dark past.       

©2019 Ragnar Jónasson and Victoria Cribb (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

Critic reviews

"One of the greatest tragic heroines of contemporary detective fiction." (Sunday Times)

"Magnificently dark and twisted." (C. J. Tudor, best selling author of The Chalk Man

"Ragnar Jónasson writes with a chilling, poetic beauty - a must-read addition to the growing canon of Iceland Noir." (Peter James, best-selling author of Love You Dead)  

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Icy Cool Cleverness!

When I read the first book of this series thinking that it was a stand-alone book I said it would have been nice to have a series based on Hulda Hermannsdottir but couldn't see it happening as she was on the verge of retirement. Jónasson has found a way though and apparently this will now be a trilogy which oddly will step backwards in time rather than forwards!

Here we go back a decade or so and Jónasson's ice cold cruelty is not restrained as Hulda has lost her family and is now immersed in her work with little else in her life. The book itself felt a little weak to me in the early stages but by the end it had delivered the key ingredients that made the first one so interesting; a sense of the beauty and sheer cold that is Iceland, a lead character you can identify and empathise with and a clever mystery with plot twists that were both personal and professional for Hulda.

I don't think that Amanda Redman is the best of narrators in the world, she doesn't have a great talent for accents or a wide range of character voices. However, she does bring Hulda Hermannsdottir herself to life extremely convincingly striking just the right tone.

The third and final book which will be published next year takes us back a further ten years so is bound to be highly charged and include tragedy for Hulda and having enjoyed the twists in this one I am quite looking forwards to it.

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So disappointing

I think I’ve listened to all of Ragnar Jonasson’s books and this is the first that I didn’t really rate highly.
I wasn’t keen on the structure. Amanda Redman is a good reader but her voice didn’t seem quite right for this story. But really, it was the story that seemed a bit thin and not very credible. If the characters of the friends had come across stronger I think it would have helped. I felt they were just sketched in, each being introduced with a sort of potted history. Sadly not one of his best.