This year has seen a plethora of outstanding short story anthologies. Already this year, BOLO Books has covered Echoes of Sherlock Holmes, Blood On the Bayou, and Storm Warning – with a few others still to come, including today’s choice.
Sunshine Noir is edited by Annamaria Alfieri and Michael Stanley and contains a very strong collection of stories tied together by the warmer climate and temperatures of their various settings. Probably because of the dark and ominous nature of the genre, noir has often been viewed as the domain of less tropical locations, but this collection proves that heat and humidity can certainly lead to mayhem and murder.
Statistically, the occurrences of violent crime in Iceland are miniscule, but with Nightblind Ragnar Jónasson shows readers that the gap between a low crime rate and a low rate of reported crime is a chasm rather than a crack. When his English-language debut Snowblind appeared last year, I dubbed Ragnar Jónasson’s work cozy noir, and now that the second book in the “Dark Iceland” series has been released, this genre moniker seems even more appropriate. Jónasson takes readers into the icy depths of Scandinavian criminality, but does so in an almost genteel manner.
In the crime fiction genre, readers could easily fill a yearly to-be-read pile with novels by authors they have read before and/or series books they have been following for eons. But one should not discount the debut novels released each year. Within those books are gems – such as Sunset City by Melissa Ginsburg – and missing them would be the real crime.