Eighteen months ago, Aleut Kate Shugak quit her job investigating sex crimes for the Anchorage DA’s office and retreated to her father’s homestead in a national park in the interior of Alaska. But the world has a way of beating a path to her door, however remote. In the middle of one of the bitterest Decembers in recent memory ex-boss — and ex-lover — Jack Morgan shows up with an FBI agent in tow. A Park ranger with powerful relatives is missing, and now the investigator Jack sent in to look for him is missing, too.
Reluctantly, Kate, along with Mutt, her half-wolf, half-husky sidekick, leaves her wilderness refuge to follow a frozen trail through the Park, twenty thousand square miles of mountain and tundra sparsely populated with hunters, fishermen, trappers, mushers, pilots and homesteaders. Her formidable grandmother and Native chief, Ekaterina Shugak, is — for reasons of her own — against Kate’s investigation; her cousin, Martin, may be Kate’s prime suspect; and the local trooper, Jim Chopin, is more interested in Kate than in her investigation. In the end, the sanctuary she sought after five and a half years in the urban jungles may prove more lethal than anything she left behind in the city streets of Anchorage.
State of suspense: listen to more Alaskan mysteries in the Kate Shugak series.
©2011 Dana Stabenow (P)2011 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
Long term book junkie only recently addicted to audio books. Now my iPod and I are inseparable.
I'm one of those folks who has to go back to the begining of a series. In this case the downside of that was that this story starts to feel a little slow and a little old fashioned, although I'm sure it was leading edge when it was published.
The book has a strong sense of place and some deeply (although not subtly) carved characters who make you care what happens to them,
The plot is complicated enough to be interesting with being annoyingly clever.
Perhaps I'm just not used to the accent but I was distracted by the fact that the reader placed stresses in unexpected places. She did dialogue well but the descriptive pieces lacked focus. It seemed her voice needed a little more range.
I will continue with this series on audible.
I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!
This is the first novel I have read or listed to by Dana Stebenow. It was okay, but most novels in the 20 book Kate Shugak Mystery series get much higher listener ratings. Like the novel, narration gets only 3 stars. The protagonist in this modern detective mystery series is very likeable as is her dog Mutt.
Reading allows me to travel through time; to visit the world's unique and stunning places. To become somebody I am not... It is glorious.
I like Kate, but I really wish there had been more exploration of her past in this book. Fleshing out her character would have guaranteed a fourth star overall. I hope that in the next novel we learn much more.
I really liked the setting. Alaska is almost another protagonist here and I love it. The descriptions of the way of life in the bush; the hardships of the cold; the loveliness of the park; the politics of the Aleut people versus the "greenies"... all of this made the book so much more intriguing than it might have been.
Say something about yourself!
This wasn't a bad listen. It was a good quick murder mystery, maybe a little predictable but still fun. I enjoyed the characters and am interested to see how Kate continues in AK. The narrator was great, I haven't been to Alaska, but her accent sounded on par with NatGeo/Discovery shows showcasing Alaskan natives. Worth the listen!
And Buffalo George
A COLD DAY FOR MURDER is the first in her Kate Shugak series--now 20+. It's not overly complicated except for the many characters -- one of them won't be in the next novel, but may pop in after a stretch in prison. The characters demonstrate Alaskan provincial racism very well. I liked the setting and the main character. Where's book #2?
It is easy to understand why this story and author won an Edgar award. The story is lively, with interesting character development, very fine depiction of the characters' environment and the cultural and legal battles of the early 90s in an Alaskan park. Tying in murders to these battles, with plenty of action and local color produces a story that is refreshing. The reader will want to read more stories about Kate and Jack. This is my first read of a Stabenow novel and I will read more of them.
Kate - she's independent and loves the outdoors, yet has needs like everyone else
I liked this book because I really grew to like Kate and I loved hearing about Alaska and the people and the customs - hearing in entertaining ways that were woven into the story. I ended and bought the 2nd in the series so that says something!
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