An Edgar, Anthony, Macavity, Gumshoe, and Barry Award winner, C. J. Box delivers the second pulse-pounding installment in his critically acclaimed series. While investigating a string of bizarre murders, Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett is forced to flee across treacherous terrain with a deadly tracker on his trail.
He's game: solve another mystery with Joe Pickett.
©2002 C.J. Box (P)2011 Recorded Books, LLC
"Picturesque detailing, admirable prose, and agitating suspense demonstrate the appeal of this follow-up to Box’s Edgar nominated debut." (Library Journal)
"Laconic Joe Pickett returns to his slightly offbeat duties in Wyoming's Bighorn Mountains in C. J. Box's Savage Run. Joe is called to the scene when an exploding cow kills a famous ecoterrorist, Stewie Woods, and his bride of three days, who were peacefully spiking trees. A visit to the cow's pugnacious owner leaves Joe defensive, angry, and curious: Why doesn't the rancher ask any questions about the bizarre accident that happened on his land? Then Joe's wife, Marybeth, begins receiving phone calls from her high-school boyfriend - the peculiarly healthy-sounding Stewie Woods. Stewie may or may not be alive, but his old pal Hayden Powell and other environmental activists are all turning up deceased in strange circumstances. As the body count climbs, Joe tries to sort out the bad guys, the good guys, and the truly dead guys in this sometimes funny, sometimes angry [novel]. Box depicts the spare beauty and cussed individualism of the intermountain West with the sure hand of a seasoned writer." (Amazon.com review)
And Buffalo George
Game Warden Joe Pickett engages the forces of evil on opposing sides of environmentalists and ranchers in modern Wyoming. Both sets of villains were well developed as their evil, but opposing, plans unfolded. Joe Pickett and his family are honestly good guys. I especially liked the exploding cow as a murder weapon, but thought the author could come up with another imaginative tool when it was used again. I'll devour book #3.
I can not wait to listen to the next book in the series. The narrator keeps me interested, like not being able to put the book down if I were reading it.
I love well-written books in virtually every genre. Quirky characters delight me, and it breaks my heart when a good plot is badly done.
This is the second Joe Pickett noel I've read. I find Joe Pickett to be an uninteresting and actually stupid hero. As a game warden in Wyoming, he should be skilled outdoorsman yet he continually makes stupid choices or shows lack of knowledge. For instance in one case he needs to pull another person up using a rope; he just pulls, he doesn't use a nearby tree or even his own body as a belay. I could go on, there is much worse, but people don't like spoilers. This book has a basic plot which is actually potentially a very good plot, but it is ruined by turning most of the characters into caricatures. Even the 'normal' people are one dimensional. This is too bad because the challenges of the American West are really important and complex and don't deserve to be treated in this cartoonish way. (I say this as a westerner.)
I would never choose to listen to a David Chandler narration. I didn't find him unbearable but he was pretty flat and certainly did not add to the story.
It wouldn't be saveable in that way. C. J. Box needs to have a better understanding of people, of the west and of the complex challenges of the Rocky Mountain West. There are so many competing wishes and needs, and perceived as well as legal rights. The allliances that arise from the changing nature of the western United States change often and are unpredictable; it is far from black and white in any area.
I do wonder if C. J. Box has gotten any better in later books in the series; I won't be finding out. I only finished reading this book to give it a thorough review. If it were up to me, I would add a bunch of 'spoilers' so other potential readers would know it's not just an off day for me.
Open Season by the same author was a pretty decent book, Savage Run also has excellent ratings and I can’t imagine why. In the first twenty minutes I’ve heard half a dozen highly improbable things and at least as many completely impossible things. Suspension of disbelief is one thing. Expecting the reader to be as gullible as a slow-witted five year old is insulting.
Classic conflict between city slicker "ranchers" and environmentalists. The irony is using animals that an environmentalist is supporting to kill those same environmentalists (with plenty of human help).
I liked the presentation of all sorts of bad guys on all sides of the political spectrum. Wolves presented as the killers that they are. Fisherman taking far more fish than needed to have a meal of fresh caught trout. Good people doing bad things because the payday is just too good. Lawyers who know how to game the legal system so that laws apply to everyone but them.
I would like to see all parties out in the forest to see things for themselves away from cities and technologies. Only then can good laws be made that find a good balance among the parties. Fat chance.
Old Broad with Keyboard
Shocking. Believable. Good.
There was one night in the middle of the book that I stayed up till dawn just to listen.
He really doesn't do females very well. I think he'd be better off just reading the female part or softening his voice a bit rather than try to BE a female voice. It annoyed me.
No. But it sure was tense there a few times!! And I couldn't shut it down.
I think I'm going to like this series a whole lot.
When Joe was leading his wife's ex boyfriend thru the canyon wall climb
The cabin scene
Another rock-solid mystery/adventure from C.J. Box.
This one pits radical environmental saboteurs and a newly-revived group of ranchers and wealthy landowners against each other, with the methodical but values-driven Joe Pickett and his family caught in the middle. The wealthy ranchers, tired of losing most of their battles to encroach on wilderness through ranching and development, have hired a "cattle detective" to hunt down infamous environmental activists. The cattle detective is right out of the past of the American West - 100 years ago they were lethal Pinkertons hired to deliver ignoble deaths to cattle rustlers and take the romance out of being an outlaw.
As in his previous books, Box paints unflattering portrayals of corrupt exploiters of the land and also of privileged environmentalists who don't see the nuance and real people behind the land and water issues in the West. He doesn't like extremists on either end of the political spectrum.
Box does a great job with his characters - even 10 year old Sheridan is thoughtfully drawn. His eco-terrorist/ex boyfriend Stewie Woods is particularly interesting - both exasperating and funny. Pickett himself is a likable Everyman with both courage and integrity, and he's also doggedly stubborn which is what it takes in these novels to beat the bad guys.
I haven't decided yet what to think about his wife, Marybeth. She's likable enough, but she's also definitely a side kick - while she's a fine alter-ego to Joe, it is difficult to see how such an allegedly interesting woman gave up a legal career and hinted-at other adventures to live in ramshackle government housing and work part time, low-paying jobs, all for love. I hope in future books Box draws out her inner life and gives us something else to like about her other than as lover-of-Joe.
Performance is as solid and interesting as the story.
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