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Destroyer Angel: An Anna Pigeon Novel (Anna Pigeon Mysteries) Hardcover – April 1, 2014

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

When her friend Heath (Hard Truth, 2005), a paraplegic, agrees to road test a wheelchair poised to revolutionize the sports-gear market, park-ranger Anna Pigeon guides Heath; her daughter, Elizabeth; the chair’s designer, Leah; and Leah’s daughter on a trek in Minnesota’s Iron Mountains. It’s all fresh air and fireside chats until four armed men suddenly appear and abduct the hikers. Anna returns from a canoe jaunt to discover her friends held at gunpoint and stays hidden so that she can track them, seizing every opportunity to help her friends. Meanwhile, Heath struggles to survive the off-trail hike and protect the girls. With no cellular reception, Anna’s cunning strikes are the only hope for rescue, and she ferociously, sometimes savagely, harnesses the rules of the wild to even the odds. Anna Pigeon’s eighteenth adventure is equal parts psychological thriller and wilderness-survival tale sure to please series followers with a darker, no-holds-barred look at the emotional impact of Anna’s survival instinct, while beckoning newcomers with top-tier white-knuckle suspense. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: When publishers use the phrase “National One-Day Laydown,” they are not calling for universal nap time. The term is reserved for all-out sales blitzes (á la Harry Potter) in which a new book is made available simultaneously throughout the country. It’s a testament to Barr’s popularity that her new novel will be getting the one-day laydown treatment. Move your blankie, Rowling; Barr wants a nap, too. --Christine Tran

Review

A harrowing survival story, well imagined and forcefully told, about a brutal act that inspires a weak woman to become a strong one. (Marilyn Stasio, New York Times Book Review, on The Rope)

Gripping . . . suspenseful . . . a tightly coiled story about trust and rebuilding a life, set against a stunning landscape. (Sun Sentinel on The Rope)

Barr writes with a cool steady hand about the violence of nature and the cruelty of man. (New York Times Book Review)

Outstanding . . . Anna's complex personality continues to elevate the series. (Publishers Weekly (starred) on Burn)

Nevada Barr is one of the best. (The Boston Globe)

Another awesome winner for Barr! (Library Journal on The Rope)

A fast-moving, unforgettable tale. (Times-Picayune (New Orleans) on The Rope)

Barr creates possibly her most riveting story yet. (Charlotte Observer on Burn)

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Product Details

  • Series: Anna Pigeon Mysteries (Book 18)
  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Minotaur Books; 1st Printing edition (April 1, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312614586
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312614584
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1.2 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (546 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #156,853 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Nevada was born in the small western town of Yerington, Nevada and raised on a mountain airport in the Sierras. Both her parents were pilots and mechanics and her sister, Molly, continued the tradition by becoming a pilot for USAir.
Pushed out of the nest, Nevada fell into the theatre, receiving her BA in speech and drama and her MFA in Acting before making the pilgrimage to New York City, then Minneapolis, MN. For eighteen years she worked on stage, in commercials, industrial training films and did voice-overs for radio. During this time she became interested in the environmental movement and began working in the National Parks during the summers -- Isle Royale in Michigan, Guadalupe Mountains in Texas, Mesa Verde in Colorado, and then on the Natchez Trace Parkway in Mississippi.
Woven throughout these seemingly disparate careers was the written word. Nevada wrote and presented campfire stories, taught storytelling and was a travel writer and restaurant critic. Her first novel, Bitterweet was published in 1983. The Anna Pigeon series, featuring a female park ranger as the protagonist, started when she married her love of writing with her love of the wilderness, the summer she worked in west Texas. The first book, Track of the Cat, was brought to light in 1993 and won both the Agatha and Anthony awards for best first mystery. The series was well received and A Superior Death, loosely based on Nevada's experiences as a boat patrol ranger on Isle Royale in Lake Superior, was published in 1994. In 1995 Ill Wind came out. It was set in Mesa Verde, Colorado where Nevada worked as a law enforcement ranger for two seasons.
The rest is, shall we say, HISTORY! Nevada's books and accomplishments have become numerous and the presses continue to roll, so in the interest of NOT having to update this page, books, awards, status on the New York Times Best Seller List -- and more -- will be enumerated with the relevant books else where on this website.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

59 of 65 people found the following review helpful By michael a. draper VINE VOICE on March 12, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
My first thought in seeing the title of Nevada Barr's latest novel was that it might have a religious context.

Far from it. The story tells of two women and their daughters who were starting a canoeing and camping trip in upper Minnesota. Lucky for them, park ranger, Anna Pigeon was also on the trip.

Fortunately, Anna wasn't in camp when four gangsters kidnapped the women. The kidnappers plan is to get the women to a landing site not far away. This way they can be picked up and proceed with getting a ransom payment. However, one of the women is a paraplegic and the leader of the kidnappers thinks she might be too much trouble.

Of the four women, one adult is a paraplegic and the other adult is the brains behind a company who has designed a wheelchair that can be used in a wilderness setting. They are accompanied by their daughters. The hoodlums had been told that there would be another woman in their group but when asked, the other women tell them that the other member of the planned group changed her mind.

Anna is late getting to the camp and sees what has transpired. She observes the plight of the women and although she is unarmed, she is like a Rambo character in that she goes up against four hoods without a weapon.

The leader of the group uses his cell phone to tell the person who will pay them that the women are captured and to send the plane.

Anna's survival skills are first manifested as she braves the cold and awaits her opportunity to get the best of the criminals. The women have to endure many things such as the sexual advances of one of the men, the hard terrain and the physical abuse of the men. They must also overcome the wilderness.
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49 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Joan C. Scott on March 9, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have read most of the Anna Pigeon series, as well as her book "Hat by Hat." In general Barr is a top-notch writer, but she missed it on this one. Of course, of late I have liked the Anna Pigeon series less than the earlier books -- perhaps because Barr moves, as have too many current authors, into the more bizarre, violent sorts of crime.

In this book that problem is compounded by WAY too much information about how all the characters are feeling and thinking as well as by the fact that she tries to tell the story from too many people's points of view. She takes the story back again and again to retell the same incident from a different point of view. The result is that the narrative is muddied. I also wondered how the crooks had such detailed information about the women's trip; this is never really explained. The story itself is very cleverly plotted, the character development is excellent, and the ending is better than satisfying, so I wish she had not diluted the effect with these narrative problems.
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Patto TOP 500 REVIEWER on February 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
At first I thought I couldn't stand the nightmare. Two women and their daughters are kidnapped while camping in the north woods of Minnesota. Four heartless creeps hold guns to their heads and smack them around.

But luckily, their friend Anna Pigeon is lurking among the trees, working on ways to save them. It's Anna, unarmed, against four vicious men with guns. Watching Anna stalk the thugs is very satisfying. As a veteran park ranger, she's at home in the wilderness. In this case, she must become as wild and dangerous as the bad guys to outsmart them.

The hardships the characters endure in the chilly woods mostly without food make this a true adventure story as well as a thriller.

The storyline is straightforward, but completely riveting. The personalities and interactions of the hostages are fascinating. One of the woman is disabled, the other a brilliant engineer whose outdoor gear designs have made her very rich. It's gratifying to watch these women rise above being mere victims. The young girls, too, have bursts of heroism.

Amidst the horror there are moments of humor: Anna's conversations with the campers' dog; Anna's disapproval of the way the thugs litter...

Anna has gone over to the dark side in this book. But she's also taken on the persona of an unstoppable superhero. Rambo and Reacher, move over!

Destroyer Angel can be read as a stand-alone novel because it's pretty self-contained. But you'll savor Anna's stratagems even more if you know her from earlier books. Readers following the series won't want to miss this one.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By C. Croasdale on May 17, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am a fan of Ms. Barr's Anna Pigeon novels. Her descriptions of the National Parks where the stories take place and the culture of the National Park employees, I always found fascinating. There is none of this in Destroyer Angel. The reader is only vaguely aware of the setting for this novel. Character development is nil. Some things are never really explained. Why did Dude shoot Reg? Did I miss something?
Anna usually gets beat up a few times in the other books but in this one everybody gets beaten and tortured over and over. It just gets you down after awhile. And boy, is Anna ever a man hating misanthrope. I'm a man and am usually pretty thick skinned but I really did start to get bugged with this book.
I hope Anna gets some help and improves her outlook on life. I don't know if I'll come back for another book filled with this much pointless misery.
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