The Darkness

The Darkness : If you like Sara Noren from The Bridge, then you'll love Hulda Hermannsdottir

3.62 (478 ratings by Goodreads)
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If you love BBC's The Bridge, then you'll love The Darkness . . .


A young woman is found dead on a remote Icelandic beach.

She came looking for safety, but instead she found a watery grave.

A hasty police investigation determines her death as suicide . . .

When Detective Inspector Hulda Hermannsdottir 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 suicide . . . And no one is telling Hulda the whole story.

When her own colleagues try to put the brakes on her investigation, Hulda has just days to discover the truth. A truth she will risk her own life to find.


'It adds several shades of darkness to Nordic noir . . . a deeply shocking climax' ANTHONY HOROWITZ

'Chilling - a must-read' Peter James

'A true masterpiece . . . a plot full of twists and turns and an ending that leaves you gasping for air' Yrsa Sigurdardottir

'Was gripped from the start of this brilliantly told story. And left wide-eyed with shock at the ending' Fiona Barton

'Page-turning stuff with an unexpected ending!' James Swallow

'As chilling as the nip in the Icelandic air' Choice Magazine
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Product details

  • Hardback | 336 pages
  • 162 x 240 x 31mm | 585g
  • Michael Joseph Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0718187245
  • 9780718187248
  • 60,778

Review quote

I've ONLY recently discovered the extraordinary Icelandic writer who adds several shades of darkness to Nordic noir . . . it builds to a deeply shocking climax -- Anthony Horowitz * Daily Mail, Ten Thrillers to Die For * If you have ever doubted the appropriateness of the phrase 'Nordic noir', The Darkness will dispel any hesitation . . . in what way this happens (and how badly) is the strength of the book. There are ever-darker surprises, culminating in a finish that leaves one with a highly disturbing image. -- BOOK OF THE WEEK * The Press * The wait was worthwhile and The Darkness first in the new trilogy, is a very efficient piece of work. Jonasson has the full measure of the Nordic noir genre, and pushes all the requisite buttons * Crime Time Newsletter * As chilling as the nip in the Icelandic air * Choice Magazine * Superb. . . chilling . . . This is the first volume in Jonasson's Hidden Iceland trilogy, which tells Hulda's story in reverse chronological order and establishes her as one of the great tragic heroines of contemporary detective fiction * Sunday Times Crime Book of the Month * Expertly plotted, with an ending that's a true shocker, The Darkness is the first book in a trilogy featuring this engaging investigator, which is good news * The Guardian * Magnificently dark and twisted! That ending - blimey! * C. J. Tudor, bestselling author of The Chalk Man * A sympathetic yet entirely unsentimental portrait of a flawed but decent detective seeking justice for a murdered Russian asylum seeker * Sunday Times Crime Club * It will get your pulse racing and keep you hooked to the last page * Simon Kernick of The Bone Field series * Crime fiction has never seen a character quite like Hulda Hermannsdoittir; nor a series launch so entirely willing to take risks and obliterate long-standing tropes . . . There is no doubt that The Darkness will rank as one of the most popular and powerful reading experiences of the year. * BOLO Books Review * The Darkness is a bullet train of a novel, at once blazingly contemporary and Agatha-Christie old-fashioned. With prose as pure and crisp as Reykjavik snowcrust, Ragnar Jonasson navigates the treacherous narrative with a veteran's hand. I reached the end with adrenalized anticipation, the final twist hitting me in the face. I dare you not to be shocked -- Gregg Hurwitz * Sunday Times bestselling author of Orphan X * Was gripped from the start of this brilliantly told story. And left wide-eyed with shock at the ending * Fiona Barton, bestselling author of The Widow * The Darkness is Ragnar Jonasson at the top of his game - deft plotting, a great central character and a story as chilling as the Icelandic winter. I couldn't put it down -- William Ryan * author of The Holy Thief * Page-turning stuff with an unexpected ending! * James Swallow * Another masterpiece from the King of Icelandic Noir -- Thomas Enger * bestselling author of the Henning Juul series * Unbearably sinister * Helen Callaghan, bestselling author of Dear Amy * The Darkness is a true masterpiece of a crime novel, introducing an original protagonist, a plot full of twists and turns and an ending that leaves you gasping for air -- Yrsa Sigurdardottir * author of the bestselling Thora Gudmundsdottir crime series * Praise for Ragnar Jonasson * - * No country associated with the label Nordic noir is as bleak, cold, snowy and empty as Iceland. And no crime writer portrays those elements as evocatively and scarily as Ragnar Jonasson * The Times * A classic crime story seen through a uniquely Icelandic lens... first rate and highly recommended -- Lee Child, on * Snowblind * A modern take on Agatha Christie---style mystery, as twisty as any slalom . . . -- Ian Rankin, on * Snowblind * Ragnar Jonasson writes with a chilling, poetic beauty - a must-read addition to the growing canon of Iceland Noir -- Peter James Distinctive blend of Nordic noir and golden age detective fiction...atmospheric...economical and evocative prose * The Guardian on Nightblind * Seductive ... an old-fashioned murder mystery with a strong central character and the fascinating background of a small Icelandic town cut off by snow. Ragnar does claustrophobia beautifully -- Ann Cleeves The ending hits the reader like a kick in the stomach * FRETTATIMINN **** * Jonasson's books have breathed new life into Nordic noir ...all the skilful plotting of an old-fashioned whodunit although it feels bitingly contemporary in setting and tone * Sunday Express * Hulda Hermannsdottir is a welcome addition to the selection of Icelandic crime fiction protagonists . . . It is almost impossible to put the book down until the last word has been read * Frettabladid **** * Out of all of Ragnar's books, this is the one I like the most . . . The book of his which reminds me most of Agatha Christie * Kiljan, on The Island * The threads lie in various places, the plot is well woven and the pieces in the puzzle come together well in the end. The structure is good, the main characters are believable, the story flows well, everyone is a suspect a la Agatha Christie and the solution unveils the mystery and leads the readers to the truth. But not all the truth, as some things are better left hidden * Morgunbladid (Icelandic newspaper) * A very good book, gripping and interesting, with all the threads carefully managed. Hopefully the author will publish as many books as possible with lead character Hulda * Vikan Magazine, on The Island *
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About Ragnar Jonasson

Ragnar Jonasson was born in Reykjavik, Iceland, where he works as a writer and a lawyer. He also teaches copyright law at Reykjavik University and has previously worked on radio and television, including as a TV-news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service and has translated 14 of Agatha Christie's novels.
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Rating details

478 ratings
3.62 out of 5 stars
5 19% (91)
4 38% (182)
3 31% (148)
2 10% (47)
1 2% (10)
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