Operation Napoleon
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Operation Napoleon

3.4 of 5 stars 3.40  ·  rating details  ·  1,007 ratings  ·  188 reviews
Why is the US Army trying to secretively remove a plame from an Icelandic glacier, and why are they threatened by a young Icelandic rescue volunteer who manages to contact his sister Kristin before disappearing off the face of the earth? Kristin, who will not rest until she discovers the truth of her brother's fate, soon is in great danger herself, leading her on a long an...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1999)
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Eric
Jul 30, 2013 Eric rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of action-packed thrillers
Recommended to Eric by: Goodreads First Reads
I won a copy of this from Goodreads First Reads, and was quite excited, as I never win anything. Then I received my copy of Operation Napoleon, a glossy soft-cover with sharp cover art, and flipped it over and saw the dreaded kiss-of-death on the back cover -- it was compared to Clive Cussler. Noooo!

However, there was still some hope, as it said it was "in the vein of Clive Cussler and Alistair MacLean." And since, unlike Cussler, Alistair MacLean is an excellent writer (even if he only wrote m...more
John
I felt a great surge of relief when I read that this book was actually written a decade or so ago and was translated because of the popularity of Arnaldur Indriðason’s Inspector Erlendur series, of which I’m a devoted fan. If so, how much he has improved as writer since this turkey was produced. Operation Napoleon is a fever dream of anti-American Icelanders encountering a posse of (totally dethpicable) comic-opera American villains as the latter try to secure and remove from an Icelandic glaci...more
Bill Sullivan
Sep 25, 2011 Bill Sullivan rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: nobody
Recommended to Bill by: goodreads winner
I won this book in a giveaway on Goodreads. If I had been browsing a bookstore or library I probably would have purchased it just based on the description. There is a mystery from WWII and secrert agencies willing to kill to protect a buried secret. Just what is usually needed to keep my interest and make for a goodread.
Unfortunately this did not happen.
I found that I was never able to connect with the people n the novel. They were one sided and drew little sympathy. The villans were evl but it...more
Jim Coughenour
First, a small alert: Indridason fans should know that this is not the latest Erlendur tale, but a translation of a book originally published in 1999 (judging from the copyright page). Spare yourself that bit of disappointment.

If anything, Operation Napoleon is evidence of how Indridason has matured as a writer: it's a serviceable thriller with an improbably plucky heroine and an even more improbable plot, centered on a World War II conspiracy, a German plane buried in a glacier, and the machin...more
Chris
I guess I don’t like thrillers very much. I can just hear people saying, “well, you’re a yank. You don’t like it when the Americans are the bad guys”.
Um, I’m a Yank; we always think the government is the bad guy.
And the Americans don’t really feel like Americans.
Typical book designed for a movie – (1) only one female character (the heroine) knows how to do anything; other female characters are bad (which isn’t saying much) (2) the bad guys take stupid pills when meeting the heroine (3) tortu...more
Alison Forde
Kristin finds herself unwittingly caught up in a covert US military intelligence (if that's not too much of an oxymoron)operation on an Icelandic glacier. The US military base on Iceland has long been a source of disquiet to many Icelanders and Kristin is no exception, but now this operation has not only compromised her country's sovereignty, but endangered the life of her brother and herself as ruthless military goons are sent to supress the truth about their covert activities.
Susan
I was lucky enough to receive a copy of Indridason's Operation Napoleon through Goodreads, and I was so glad that I did. This is actually the second book from Indridason that I have read although I hadn't realized it until later having read Silence of the Grave for a book club read. I enjoyed Operation Napoleon much more than the other book largely because it is a stand alone thriller that I was able to follow much more easily. Indridason does an excellent job at developing his main character, K...more
Jo-Ann Murphy
I won this book through the Goodreads giveaways. Boy, am I glad! This book was fantastic! I could barely put it down.

It was wonderful to see a strong woman lead with a brain who knew how to use it! I would love to see this made into a movie.

There was a quick pace with lots of action and an unpredictable storyline. There was a little violence but was mainly at the beginning and end. The first violence really turned me off and I was not sure I wanted to continue reading. Again, I am glad I did bec...more
Ronald Roseborough
This story has a lot of action in a smooth flowing storyline. A World War II plane trapped for decades under the ice of a glacier in Iceland, has risen to the surface. The secrets frozen inside the German Fokker trimotor plane are thawing out and threatening to heat up the political world. The heat is already felt in Washington D. C. where spy satellites have recorded the emergence of the plane thousands of miles away. Clandestine forces are ordered to swing into action, letting nothing stand in...more
Book Him Danno
I love this author and wish I could read Icelandic so I could read them before they are translated. It takes years to get one of his books because of the speed of the translation. My husband discovered this author before our trip to visit my parents in Iceland a few years back. They were serving a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Selfoss Iceland and we took our two oldest with us to visit them.

We read Jar City and Secrets of the Grave before going and it gave you a...more
Gloria Feit
Long before there were Erlender and Sigurdur Oll, Arnaldur Indridason wrote this imaginative novel. In fact, it was copyrighted a decade ago, and only now has been published in Great Britain and Canada. [The next Reykjavic Murder Mystery, “Outrage,” was recently published in the UK) It is a pity we have had to wait this long for an English translation of this work, but all the more reason to be grateful that that has now been done.

Just before the end of World War II a German bomber crashes on a...more
Randal
Arnaldur Indridason is one my current favorite authors. I've read the first three of his Inspector Erlendur novels and am looking forward to the rest. "Operation Napoleon" is a stand-alone thriller (although Erlendur does make an uncredited cameo appearance) that uses the quest to recover the wreckage of a German bomber that crash-landed on a glacier at the tail-end of World War II to explore the tensions between Iceland and the U.S. military presence in country. The plane, with both German and...more
Shari
Is it because Indridason is writing in a slightly different genre than his Erlendur mysteries, or is it the translator? The narrative is clunky, at times -- it doesn't flow. This is one of those times when I wish I could read the original language so that I would know for sure that the translation is smart and true.

A heroine who is irritating, impatient and too often thoughtless and impulsive -- not smart enough to fully assess the situations she finds herself in. There are bad guys, certainly,...more
Ed
The Iceland that served as both foreground and background for the taut, perfectly paced mystery novels featuring Erlendur Sveinsson, the gloomy detective with a broken marriage, a daughter addicted to heroin and a horrible memory of a lost brother from his childhood. Moving from the hothouse, closed in atmosphere of crime on an island in the North Atlantic to the opened out world of international skullduggery, super-secret special ops killers and pusillanimous cabinet ministers is difficult and...more
Rachel
If this were the first book I'd read by this author, I wouldn't have bothered reading any more by him. Fortunately I had read and enjoyed a couple of others, which apparently were written after this earlier attempt. This wasn't really poorly written in the sense of the writing style itself, but that's about all the good I can say about it.

Also, anyone translating into English should know not to have American characters saying "whilst" instead of "while". That's pretty much Translation 101. Okay,...more
Toni Osborne
Written over a decade ago but only recently translated into English "Operation Napoleon" is quite different from what we have become accustomed to. Arnaldur Indridason has deviated from his usual sleuth detective hero mystery to write an imaginative standalone thriller telling a story that reaches back to World War 11.

It begins in 1945 during the last months of the war when a German bomber on a clandestine mission is forced to crash- land on one of Iceland's largest glaciers. The plane and its...more
Reinhold
Vorneweg: Gletschergrab gehört nicht zu der Erlendur-Reihe aus der bisher "Nordermoor", "Todeshauch" und "Engelsstimme" erschienen sind. Das Werk entstand 1999 also noch vor diesen Romanen, aber nach den bisher noch nicht veröffentlichten beiden Romanen aus der Erlendur-Reihe. Im Unterschied zu den Erlendur-Romanen handelt es sich eher um einen Thriller als um einen Kriminalroman - wenngleich die Grenzen zwischen diesen Genres natürlich schwimmend sind.

Im Jahr 1945 stürzt ein von amerikanischen...more
Bookworm1858
This book was definitely me going out of my comfort zone. First it's a translation from Icelandic; second it's an adult book; and third it's a thriller. I don't read many of those! But after seeing Captain America, I was kind of primed for some WWII suspense so I took a chance.

I mostly ended up enjoying this. The characters didn't have a great deal of depth, being defined largely by one or two traits but I'm not sure I usually expect more in my thrillers. For one-offs, as I think this is, I want...more
Gary
American and European writers of the thriller genre would do well to set aside their obsession with hi-tech gadgets and right/left politics and concentrate on telling a good story and developing good characters. The author of this book-more noted for his (in my opinion) slow, deliberate, and occasionally soapy crime stories-has come up with a thriller that other thriller writers would do well to read and learn from.
As much as I hate to say it: I could not put this book down. With very few breaks...more
Rob Kitchin
Operation Napoleon was originally published in Icelandic in 1999, Indridason’s third book after the first two, as yet untranslated, Detective Erlendur novels. Unlike his police procedural novels, Operation Napoleon is a thriller. The strengths of the book are the characterisation and the pace. Kristin is well penned and her back story well elaborated, and the other characters have sufficient depth to be memorable and credible. Indridason keeps the pace high throughout, with sufficient tension to...more
Sensitivemuse
I really enjoyed this book because of its’ action sequences. There’s quite a few chase scenes, several fighting scenes, and you can’t leave out interrogations! so I flew through this book eagerly and thought it was pretty good. What I really thought was well done, was the translation job. Most books that have been translated have a tendency to be haphazard, and at times certain passages have to be read a few times over to get the gist of it. With this book there is no problem and the writing is...more
Inga
Arnaldur Indridason hat einige Kriminalromane ohne seinen beliebten Protagonisten Erlendur geschreiben. In "Gletschergrab" geht es um ein Flugzeug, dass gegen Ende des zweiten Weltkriegs mit brisanter Fracht über dem größten Gletscher Europas, dem Vatnajökull, abgestürzt ist und nun in den neunziger Jahren langsam von diesem wieder ausgespuckt wird.
Die Amerikaner, sowieso noch auf Island stationiert, wollen das Flugzeug um jeden Preis bergen, ohne dass jemand davon etwas mitbekommt.
So werden die...more
Karen
Reactions to an author taking a detour away from a much loved series, or style (or both for that matter) can vary. Some readers love the chance to head into new territory, others find that departure too much of a step, and long to return to the familiarity of the series, the known characters or the styling. And as with everything, for this reader, it all depends.

OPERATION NAPOLEON is a thriller, set in Iceland, but based around the mystery of a plane that went down at the very end of World War...more
Caressa
I won Operation Napoleon(ARC) in a first reads giveaway (This is a really awesome way to acquire books!), and although I don't usually enjoy historical/political fiction, I was really looking forward to this one. I wasn't extremely disappointed in this book, but I didn't find it at all unusual or brilliant.
Operation Napoleon was the story of Kristian, a young lady whose brother was heavily injured by soldiers after he sees a secret service organization extracting a plane from ice on an Icelan...more
Stephen
It doesn't take one long to be drawn into Arnaldur Indridason's fast paced novels. This Icelandic author catches me every time in just the first few pages. After that, it is an internal battle to have to put down the book or go do something that requires my attention.
It is the end of World War II when a German Junkers aircraft crashes in the ice fields of Iceland. One survivor attempts to walk for help but he fails. The plane seems to have been carrying both German and American officers.....and...more
Carolyn
This was rather different to the usual Reykjavik murders series, being more of a rollicking, action-packed adventure, and with far more violence. It possibly will have more international appeal than some of Arnaldur's other novels, though I prefer his very Icelandic detective stories. That being said, it was a good read on its own terms. It dealt quite accurately with the differing opinions of Icelanders to having foreign, especially American troops in their country at the Nato base at Keflavik....more
Sarah Beth
This is a Goodreads first reads giveaway review.
I have to admit that I was disappointed by "Operation Napoleon". Probably because I expected a lot from the author of "Jar City".

The novel begins with the plane crash on the glacier in Iceland at the end of WWII. It is clear that the passengers did not survive, although one of them run away and disappeared...

The plane seemed to be extremely important for the American intelligence. So important that they monitored the glacier for decades after the...more
Ethan
As the end of the second world war draws near, an American plane crashes into an Icelandic glacier. The U.S. Army sends a team of soldiers, lead by a captain whose brother was on the flight, to uncover the wreckage and search for survivors. Unfortunately, by the time the team arrives, the plane is buried by the ice and is invisible to those searching for it. As treaties are signed and the war officially ends, it seems that this may be one of the last tragedies of the war.

Flash forward to the ye...more
Stein
Not having read any of Indridason's detective mystery books, this action/thriller/mystery novel with a WWII theme made me wonder about his acclaimed success. To his credit, he manages to keep readers' attention so that, in spite of its faults, the book is a page-turner. But suspensefulness--although very important--isn't the only criteria on which to evaluate the effectiveness of a novel of this genre.

The plot lacks credibility and seems half-cooked. It assumes way too much. The reasoning behind...more
Alan
I picked a copy of this book up because I was ready for some good, escapist, action/adventure, and that's exactly what I got!

I had never read Indridason's work before, but it was a good mix of intrigue, action, suspense, and mystery. I have to say that the characters are not particularly well developed, but since this story is almost exclusively plot-driven that didn't matter all that much. With that said, I did find the major characters to be engaging, and you do find yourself pulling for the...more
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Believability 2 13 Jul 25, 2013 06:18PM  
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Arnaldur was born in Reykjavík on 28 January 1961, the son of writer Indriði G. Þorsteinsson. He graduated with a degree in history from the University of Iceland in 1996. He worked as a journalist for the newspaper Morgunblaðið from 1981 to 1982, and later as a freelance writer. From 1986 to 2001, he was a film critic for Morgunblaðið.

His first book, Synir duftsins (Sons of Dust) came out in 1997...more
More about Arnaldur Indriðason...
Jar City (Inspector Erlendur #3) Silence of the Grave(Inspector Erlendur #4) The Draining Lake (Inspector Erlendur #6) Voices (Inspector Erlendur #5) Arctic Chill (Inspector Erlendur #7)

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