As a young person, I and millions of others for hundreds of miles experienced the eruption of Mount St. Helen's. Our cars and houses, every tree and street, every window and even the electrical wires were covered in ash. For days we were told not to drive in case the ash would eat out the mechanisms of our cars. Millions of people walked around with masks on.
Years later comes a novel by one of our most talented young writers, Jon Gosch, about the build up to the eruption. The novel weaves a police/crime mystery plot into characters and plot in the Mount St. Helen's area. Every character is wonderfully drawn, and the plot moves forward with power; this novel very hard to put down!
Gosch was born and raised in the areas about which he writes and comes from a police family. You can feel the authenticity of his life experience in the novel. While the plot is fiction, the people within the plot are altogether real. Capturing dialogue and life-pace as cleanly as Gosch does is no small feat. We will be seeing a lot more of Gosch in the future. I believe he is a powerful talent, and I highly recommend Deep Fire Rise to anyone who wants to read a strong, well written police mystery set against a vibrant natural landscape. I also recommend the book for anyone who remembers the build up to and experience of Mount St. Helen's exploding in the 1980s...you'll feel the many resonances I felt as I read the book.