Top positive review
Good book, excellent read - but pricey for a "Part 1"
Reviewed in the United States on January 23, 2016
Overall, this is a very good book, as good if not better than the first 4 in the Cork O'Connor series. You have the same great characters - Cork, his family, his contacts, his fellow lawmen, his friends, and you see those characters develop more in this story. I liked that there were some nasty villains, plenty of suspense, and several plot twists and turns. Just when you think you have the story figured out, something happens that takes it in a different direction.
It looks like the author uses a few "new" literary devices - maybe state-of-the-art when this book was written in 2005. First is starting the book with the last chapter (kind of like the "Two days Previous...." start to a modern action/drama TV show). I'm not a big fan of that approach, but it does set you up for some of the plot twists later on and contributes to a level of suspense and tension throughout the book. The second literary approach is to use this book as a send-up to the next book (Copper River). Which is one of the reasons I was thinking of dropping a star: the story is left unresolved; the biggest, nastiest, slimiest, and creepiest of the villains are still at large and reeking havoc on our hero and his people. Hopefully all will be resolved in Book 6, Copper River.
Which leaves me to my one beef: why $13.99 for an e-book version (same on Kindle or Nook, by the way) that is basically first of two? Why $13.99 for a 10-year old (almost 11-year old) book? New releases from authors like Baldacci, Grisham, and Rollins are in the same price range. Simon & Schuster seem to be doing some serious profiteering on a book medium that has no paper, no warehousing and distribution, no middlemen - and that can't even be shared like a tree-book. I've been reading e-books since the Peanut Reader (now Nook, after several iterations) came out for the early Palm Pilots (pre-smart phone era). This publisher price-gouging is very disconcerting.
One small solution: buy the three-book sets. Prices per book will be less than $10. If you haven't read the first in the Cork O'Connor series, buy the first three-book set. I plan on buying the third three-book set, after Copper River. Despite the high prices, William Kent Krueger as an author is just that good, and one of my favorites.