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Publisher's Summary

In the wake of an earthquake, the water level of an Icelandic lake drops suddenly, revealing the skeleton of a man half-buried in its sandy bed. It is clear immediately that it has been there for many years. There is a large hole in the skull. Yet more mysteriously, a heavy communication device is attached to it, possibly some sort of radio transmitter, bearing inscriptions in Russian. The police are called in and Erlendur, Elinborg, and Sigurdur Olii begin their investigation, which gradually leads them back to the time of the Cold War when bright, left-wing students would be sent from Iceland to study in the "heavenly state" of communist East Germany.

©2004 Arnaldur Indridason (P)2013 Recorded Books

What listeners say about The Draining Lake

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

History over mystery?

An earlier reviewer noted "too much history." That may have been true for her, and this may be why: the story is centered on characters who left Iceland in the fifties to study at the U of Leipzig in East (Communist) Germany. One of the characters is an outspoken Hungarian woman in the time before the Hungarian uprising of 1956. If this isn't a topic that fascinates you (as it does me), then you too will find that it's too much history. I found the book intriguing, but that's because I like this kind of interweaving of history and mystery.
If you do too, then you'll also like Adrian McKinty's Northern Irish mysteries--starting with The Cold, Cold Ground. Before I end, I greatly appreciate George Guidall's narration. I don't speak Icelandic but he certainly pronounces the Icelandic names with confidence and authority, so I hope he's correct as well.

4 people found this helpful

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A delightfully dark and twisted story

This series is just fantastic. The characters are rich and the crimes are fascinating. I enjoyed every minute.

4 people found this helpful

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excellent, engrossing read

Carefully crafted with subplots, excellent historical research, and character development. Thoroughly engrossing plot and resolution.

2 people found this helpful

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4

This kept me busy. The story is
so well worked out that if my mind wandered, I quickly rewound so I could be sure I'd not missed a vital clue. I enjoyed this.

2 people found this helpful

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Glad I stayed with it.

I agree with the others that said the unfamiliar names & the jumping back & forth in the past & present was difficult to follow, but I'm glad I stayed with it.
I also enjoyed the history lesson.

2 people found this helpful

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Good book!

This was a good listen. Yes, like some of the reviews said it goes into some history, but stick with it it’s worth it. There was just one chapter which felt a bit dry with the history but it all makes sense as you read on. This is one of those books where more than the whodunnit we are interested in the whydunnit. Excellent narration by George Guidall as usual.

1 person found this helpful

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Good Read

The most engaging book I have EVER istened to...enjoy. This author must be enjoyed by all.

1 person found this helpful

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Thank goodness for hydrologists!

I was really looking forward to this book. While it was very good, well performed, and interesting historically, I was hoping for more of a geology connection.

Another great read! Thank you.

1 person found this helpful

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Complex but very original.

One of the novel aspects of this writers books is the interesting historical background that’s provided related to Iceland - in this case the Cold War. The actual plot is quite labyrinthine but worth sticking with. Could have been edited down a bit here and there - some scenes dragged on and on. The narration as usual is excellent.

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Great

Draining lake is one of those stories that can’t be anticipated. But trying is sure fun. Once again.