"The Shadow District", by Arnaldur Indridason

The Shadow District - Arnaldur Indridason

Book #1 in the Reykjavik Wartime Mysteries series

In the first book of a new crime series Mr Indridason introduces us to new players while providing a great window into Icelandic culture and exploring at the same time his signature themes of greed and abuse of power once more. 

This story covers a fascinating period. Here we have two policemen, one Icelandic working in Reykjavik and the other is a Canadian and a member of the armed forced, he is of Icelandic heritage and speaks Icelandic. Stephan and Flovent are the wartime players on the case. As the story moves back and forth in time, Konrad a retired policeman working in our time becomes interested in the case from the war years and here we go back in time……this is very well done.

As the narrative switches between two investigations and two timelines, Mr. Indridason precise prose keeps the details of the separate timeline clear without any embellishment. With minimalist words and gentle dialogue the author has skillfully weaves two classic whodunit cases. 

Mr. Indridason has definitely did a lot of research to find the right atmosphere for the time and give us an enlightening storyline filled with aspects surrounding the relationship between the Icelandic women and the troops “The Situation” as it was known. The social and historical climate and the police procedural are all deftly orchestrated to make a captivating and emotional charged drama.

This is a gripping and a very captivating read.