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Publisher's Summary

A man is found murdered in his Reykjavik flat. There are no obvious clues apart from a cryptic note left on the body and a photograph of a young girl's grave. Delving into the dead man's life Detective Erlendur discovers that 40 years ago he was accused of an appalling crime, but never convicted. Had his past come back to haunt him?

As Erlendur struggles to build a relationship with his unhappy daughter, his investigation takes him to Iceland's Genetic Research Centre, where he uncovers disturbing secrets that are even darker than the murder of an old man.

Jar City is the first book in the series starring Detective Erlendur available in English

©2000 Arnaldur Indridason 2000, 2004. English translation copyright © Bernard Scudder 2004 (P)2014 Isis Publishing Ltd, Random House Audiobooks

What listeners say about Jar City

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worse than watching paint dry

boring with a stiff, expressionless narrator. no character development, plot had no twists. very pedestrian.

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Very enjoyable

Great story and narration. On to the next one in series. Glad to have discovered this author

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Not Bad, Not Great

The crime thriller is not nearly as interesting as the later genealogy discussions of Iceland, although it was refreshing to read a genre novel from an author/country I've never read before. Kudos to Iceland, but as a detective story, not a standout.

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Perfect Icelandic Thriller

Dark and grim like the autumnal October rain falling relentlessly on the poor souls that try to live their life as best they can...But maladies, evil and life's cruel surprises await them
Masterfully written and narrated. It will give you just the tiniest ray of hope in the finale.

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  • Neil Russell-Bates
  • 02-15-18

Would definitely benefit from a different narrator

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

No, i think I would be concerned that they might find the narrator too irritating

What was one of the most memorable moments of Jar City?

When they are digging up the floor in the apartment, it was well described and you could imagine how unpleasant it would have been

How did the narrator detract from the book?

His different voices for different characters were weird and his "female" voices in particular were dreadful. When he couched the main character's daughter it was very unconvincing and nearly ruined the whole audio book.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

You won't look at the old man living next door the same way again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • happuccino
  • 12-18-16

Sounded like it was a reading for Horrid Henry

What would have made Jar City better?

Different narrator more suited to the nature of the book.

Would you ever listen to anything by Arnaldur Indridason again?

Not with same narrator.

Would you be willing to try another one of Saul Reichlin’s performances?

No

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Disappointment

Any additional comments?

Can't go on with it.... narrator tone and voices all wrong

1 person found this helpful

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  • S. Coakley-Evans
  • 08-24-20

Finished it

a good story but soooo depressing. it had it all with a complete absence of any redeeming lightness. read it at your peril.

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  • J. Mchugh
  • 12-12-16

Too Funny A Performance to Thrill

I found the narrator was (maybe unintentionally) quite funny, which diminished the thrill of this crime thriller.

Enjoyable nonetheless.

Impressed with his pronunciations.

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  • ausgraeme
  • 11-26-20

Maybe an ok holiday read

An ok light read but a bit ordinary. I was able to guess the motive for the murder the story is based around from very early on and the killer is signposted from miles away. The story never rises to any great heights, it more just meekly unfolds in front of you - no tension or drama at any point. There is also a subplot based around the detective and his daughter which seems to be there solely for the purpose of writing the final line of the book but seems otherwise pointless. Don’t think I’d return for other books in this series.

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  • elizabeth b.
  • 09-13-20

Love Iceland

This is a terrific series with one of my favourite narrators Saul Reichlin. I so enjoyed this. So sad but that’s life I guess.

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  • Michael
  • 04-30-19

Great story, great performance overall!

A great performance all round - only negative is Saul's narration of various characters are at times hard to tell apart. Otherwise 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻