Monday, 9 July 2018

Book Review - The Polar Bear Killing by Michael Ridpath - Bookish World Cup - Iceland


Amazon UK
Title: The Polar Bear Killing
Author: Michael Ridpath 
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Purchased
Publisher: Corvus
Publication Date: 7th January 2016
Rating: 5 Stars


When a polar bear is sighted in a sleepy Icelandic fishing village, then shot dead by local policeman Constable Halldór, it triggers a debate in the local community. Was Halldór a hero for killing the bear, or should the animal have been protected?

Animal rights activists in the area see the constable as a villain, and when days later the dead body of Halldór is discovered at a remote beauty spot, the activists are immediately under suspicion.

As Sergeant Magnus Ragnarsson and his colleague Detective Vigdís Audardótti begin to investigate the policeman's murder, they soon discover that things are not as clear-cut as might first appear. By degrees, Magnus and Vigdís are drawn into this small and complex community - one riven with rivalries and grudges - in search of a deadly killer...

It had been a long while since I last read anything by Michael Ridpath and his Magnus Iceland mysteries series, so had been a bit worried as to if anything would still feel familiar. 

Thankfully some of the characters did ring a bell especially Detective Vigdis who is the main detective in this story, who has been called to a remote area of Iceland from Reykjavik to help work out who killed a local policeman. 

Just days before the local policeman had killed a polar bear and there were some unhappy people about thanks to that. 

In fact the initial scenes involving the polar bear were full of description, and I found it a real shame at the policy that lead to the death of a magnificent creature, no matter how dangerous they are. 

This is s short novella that packs a good amount of story in, its straight to the point police work, set in a small Icelandic village, and I didn't figure out who had killed the policeman.  I had my own theory but couldn't quite make it work, so glad I was wrong. 

I love looking at how police forces work in different countries, especially with interviews having to be conducted in Icelandic no matter what other others languages everyone speaks.  Was also good to see glimpses of Sergeant Magnus Ragnarssen who was the hero of the other books in the series. 

I read this in just over an hour and was a good way to spend the time, trying to solve a murder before the police could.   I'm really looking forward to the release of the next book in this series. 

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