An ice-cold mystery haunts Reykjavík in 1986, in this heart-stopping crime novel co-written by the Icelandic Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdottir

‘A classic crime novel, its noir at its finest’ The Sunday Times

‘Nordic noir at its most authoritative’ Financial Times


What happened to Lara?

Iceland, 1956. Fourteen-year-old Lara spends the summer on the small island of Videy, just off the coast of Reykjavík.

In early August, the girl disappears without a trace.

The mystery becomes Iceland's greatest unsolved case. What happened to the young girl? Is she still alive? Did she leave the island, or did something happen to her there?

Thirty years later, journalist Valur Robertsson begins his own investigation into Lara's case. But as he draws closer to discovering the secret, it's soon clear that this is a mystery someone will stop at nothing to keep unsolved...


‘A crime novel with a differenceGuardian

‘A beautifully constructed mystery by two super smart partners in crime’ Anthony Horowitz

‘I read all 349 pages in one go and enjoyed every second…The twist at the halfway point of the book hits the reader like a wave of the ice cold Atlantic Ocean’ Fréttablaðið Newspaper

‘Loved it!’ Ann Cleeves


  • A classic crime novel, its noir at its finest
    The Sunday Times

About the authors

Ragnar Jónasson

Ragnar Jónasson is an international number one bestselling author who has sold over three million books worldwide. He was born in Reykjavík, Iceland, where he also works as an investment banker and teaches copyright law at Reykjavík University.

He has previously worked as a TV news reporter for the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service and translated fourteen of Agatha Christie's novels. His critically acclaimed international bestseller The Darkness is soon to be a major TV series, and Ridley Scott will be producing Outside as a feature film.
Learn More

Katrín Jakobsdóttir

KATRÍN JAKOBSDÓTTIR has been Prime Minster of Iceland since 2017. Katrín has been a member of the Icelandic Parliament since 2007 but before that she worked in publishing and education. She served as the minister for education, research and culture from 2009 to 2013. She lives with her husband and three sons in Reykjavík. Hailing from a family of prominent Icelandic poets and academics, she wrote her Master's dissertation on Icelandic crime writing. She and Jónasson are long-time friends, who first worked together nearly ten years ago as part of the jury for an award for best crime fiction in translation in Iceland.
Learn More

Sign up to the Penguin Newsletter

For the latest books, recommendations, author interviews and more