Book of the Day

Nightblind by Ragnar Jonasson / Review by Amy Nygaard

Nightblind

By Ragnar Jonasson

Minotaur Books
$25.99
ISBN 978-1250096098
Publication Date: December 5, 2017

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Nightblind

Review by Amy Nygaard

An isolated city in northern Iceland boasts a police force of two and practically no crime. The fatal shooting of the police inspector at a remote location throws young policeman Ari Thor Arason into the uncomfortable investigation of discovering just who wanted whom dead. Ragnar Jonasson’s Nightblind, published by Minotaur Books, stirs together murder, mental instability, and unsuspected domestic problems in several households.

Nightblind sets up the inciting incident with the shooting of the police inspector, who is filling in for an ill Ari Thor. The discovery of a phone call drawing the inspector to the desolate, abandoned house on a cliff where he met a bullet leaves Ari Thor confused. Who made the call? Was he the intended target? What is the new town mayor hiding from him?

Murder is a rare occurrence in their relatively peaceful, chilly town, and Ari Thor struggles with investigating such a serious crime while his home life crumbles beneath him. As he pursues justice for his fellow officer, he risks losing his family, a possibility he can’t fathom. Interspersed throughout the story are journal entries from the past, written by a patient in a mental hospital ward. The additional storyline gives away few clues about the journal author’s identity until the end, and the truth about who fired a gun at the police inspector is left to the last.

So many elements of a successful suspense/procedural were present, but not to the rich depth you’d expect.  From relationships to plot twists to suspects, depth was lacing, which left me frustrated because I very much enjoy this genre typically.  Nightblind has story potential, and I wish it was more fully develped because overall, I like the premise, the twists, and the resolution.  

Amy Nygaard – I am a lifelong lover of words, and reading has been my passion since childhood. After years of editing work and teaching grammar and writing, I fell in love with writing myself.  I have several adult suspense manuscripts completed, a middle-grade boy’s mystery first-of-series, and the framework of a separate middle-grade mystery/adventure series. I’ve attended multiple writing conferences around the country, pitching agents, making new friends, and learning all I can about the world of writing and publishing.