With mysteries, and mysteries in a series with such tried and true (still enjoyable but nevertheless) formulas, I often find myself skimming. This is the first Nevada Barr book I've downloaded on Audible, and I'm tempted to go back to the beginning and work my way through again, this time in audio form.
The narrator does a great job pacing and creating the moods that I often rushed through --without even realising or meaning to. When I think back on all the Pigeon mysteries, I can't really remember whodunit, but I remember the scenery and feeling of the parks. With this book and narrator, I feel everything is painted more fully in my mind and the feeling of actions is more enduring, and I was swallowed up by the story and imagery not just the compelling descriptions and love of the scenery, which previously were sufficient reason enough to grab each new book of the series.
The narrator's voice is pretty much exactly how I hear Anna's voice and speech patterns in my head, so that's always nice. ;)
Barbara Rosenblatt is superb as always. I will listen to anything she reads!! I love Anna and all the wonderful settings of the Anna Pigeon books. For me this book lacked any personnel connections for Anna and thus much of the humor and irony present in many of the earlier books in the series is missing. The book seemed dark, a bit too gruesome and vulgar and somewhat depressing. All those negatives aside, I still love Anna and the wonderful park settings of these books.
A major character of each Anna Pigeon story is the park in which it is set, so the physical descriptions are vital to the plot. Winter Study finds Anna returning to Isle Royal (abbreviated by the park service as ISRO and pronounced "Is Row"), so we have the park of A Superior Death, but in the depths of winter.
I have read or listened to all of the Anna Pigeons and this one rates as one of my favorites. Barbara Rosenblatt does her usual excellent job with the reading.
My only regret is that now I have to wait a year for another new Anna.
I DO love Nevada Barr and her park ranger stories. This is one of the later books, as Anna is well into her middle age, and the author reminds us often of Anna's growing limitations. Anna is as real as any of us for her natural aging. This story is somewhat typical, and perhaps not Ms. Barr's best, but I highly recommend it just the same. As with all her books, the author exposes a part of our wilderness that most of us will never see. She takes us on a detailed tour of each new park site with each of her books, weaving in a bit of mystery, humor, and nature in the process. Learn a bit about wolves while living in a frigid, isolated island habitat. You will come away with a wonderous sense of having experienced a winter-adventure vacation, without the risk of frostbite or the expense. You'll love it.
After a long wait, classic Nevada Barr bursts forth once again, combining her typical respect for nature, low-tech CSI type reportage, mixed with irony and irreverent humor. The setting is, as usual, a dominant character in the novel, and I have put Isle Royale on my list of places to visit. I did miss the presence of some of Anna Pigeon's family from "the mainland", however, her sister Molly and her new husband, Paul. The Anna Pigeon series has one flaw in that these books are just too short, making my escape into the calm and beauty of our national parks an all-too-brief fling.
I've read all the Anna Pigeon novels. Each features Anna in a different US National Park where she has worked now almost 2 decades as law enforcement officer. She's a pariah in the NPS: she shuns her duties almost always and is assigned to increasingly isolated, dangerous or marginal stints. Anna's neglect of: basic interrogation techniques or use of back-up or weapons or communication systems are all infuriating to a reader's sensibilities but omnipresent and necessary to further the plot. Each book features lengthy (and usually compelling) who-did-what-to-who mysteries, usually complicated by a big crime mixed up in a lesser deception.
Nevada Barr's description of wilderness and National Parks have been the clear selling point of her novels. Anna is cunning and industrious but often unlikeable. Her liberal-arts and anti-social viewpoints were fresh in the first few books but are often over circumstantial and become repetitive.
Unfortunately this series of novels is devolving in two ways: 1. Description of the scenery and the majesty of Anna's locations is thinning. 2. Angry feminism and anti-straight-male sentiments are increasing.
Nevada Barr's earlier books are much better.
I love the Anna Pigeon mysteries, and really enjoy the book settings in the national parks. Nevada Barr does a great job of making the parks come to life. However in this latest novel, the plot is bit hard to believe, although Nevada Barr's description of the outdoors is up to her ususal high standard. I had some difficulty with the moral justice in this story - seemed to be a bit off.
Since I have been Isle Royale, I found the story interestion.
The whole book descibes Isle Royale. One of my favorite places to visit.
During the hotest July on record, the story kept me a little bit cooler.
I completely agree Barbara Rosenblat is supurb, and Barr's books are great but she went over the top in subjecting Anna to pain in this one. Anna's various ordeals were so intricately described it semed that they had become space fillers.
I approached this first book, that I owned, by Nevada Barr with much hope of enjoyment. What a let down! The characters aren't likeable or interesting. With the beginning off to a slow start, I didn't give up. Half way through the book, I should of realized that I could of better spent those hours listening to a book of some interest and redeeming value; entertainment or educational. Teenagers telling spooky stories around a campfire and trying to scare each other would of been more fun than this book. I own another book by Nevada Barr (unread); but I'm in no hurry to discover if it is better than this book.