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Heaven's Keep: A Novel (Cork O'Connor Mystery Series Book 9) [Kindle Edition]

William Kent Krueger
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (140 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Intrepid hero Cork O’Connor faces the most harrowing mission of his life when a charter plane carrying his wife, Jo, goes missing in a snowstorm over the Wyoming Rockies.

Months after the tragedy, two women show up on Cork’s doorstep with evidence that the pilot of Jo’s plane was not the man he claimed to be. It may not be definitive proof, but it’s a ray of light in the darkness. Agreeing to investigate, Cork travels to Wyoming, where he battles the interference of local law enforcement who may be on the take, the open hostility of the Northern Arapaho, who have much to lose if the truth is known, and the continuing attempts on his life by assassins who shadow his every move. At the center of all the danger and deception lies the possibility that Jo’s disappearance was not the end of her, that somewhere along the labyrinthine path of his search, maybe even in the broad shadow of Heaven’s Keep itself, Cork will find her alive and waiting for him.

Books In This Series (14 Books)
Complete Series


  • Editorial Reviews

    Amazon.com Review

    Book Description
    When a charter plane carrying Cork O'Connor's wife, Jo, goes missing in a snowstorm over the Wyoming Rockies, Cork must accept the terrible truth that his wife is gone forever. But is she? In Heaven's Keep, celebrated author William Kent Krueger puts his intrepid hero through the most harrowing mission of his life.

    Months after the tragedy, two women show up on Cork's doorstep with evidence that the pilot of Jo's plane was not the man he claimed to be. It may not be definitive proof, but it's a ray of light in the darkness surrounding Cork's loss. Agreeing to investigate, he travels to Wyoming, where he battles the interference of local law enforcement who may be on the take, the open hostility of the Northern Arapaho, who have much to lose if the truth is known, and the continuing attempts on his life by assassins who shadow his every move.

    At the center of all the danger and deception lies the possibility that Jo's disappearance was not the end of her, that somewhere along the labyrinthine path of his search, maybe even in the broad shadow of Heaven's Keep itself, Cork will find her alive and waiting for him.



    Amazon Exclusive: Vince Flynn Reviews Heaven's Keep

    Vince Flynn's writing career began in 1998, upon the publication of his first novel--and first bestseller--Term Limits. Since then, he has written ten political thrillers that feature renegade CIA operative Mitch Rapp. His two most recent novels, Protect and Defend and Extreme Measures, were both #1 New York Times bestsellers. His next book, Pursuit of Honor, will be published by Atria in October. He, like William Kent Krueger, has made his home in the Twin Cities, a longtime urban sanctuary for writers of every genre. Read his exclusive Amazon guest review of Heaven's Keep.

    William Kent Krueger is the real deal. A dedicated wordsmith, you can find him most days at the St. Clair Broiler in St. Paul, hunched over a notebook, handwriting his latest masterpiece. Kent has written nine novels featuring half-Irish, half-Native American private detective Corcoran O'Connor. Every one of them, from Iron Lake to Heaven's Keep, is brimming with suspense and taps into our darkest fear: the inevitability that our loved ones will be taken from us.

    Heaven's Keep begins with a plane crash. Over the imposing fortress of the Wyoming Rockies, a small charter plane carrying Jo, Cork's wife and mother of their three children, seemingly disappears into thin air. Cork travels to Casper to investigate, his thirteen-year-old son Stephen in tow, and is met with forbiddingly frozen terrain and the kind of weather a polar bear would hesitate to journey into. Despite help from local authorities and search crews, no sign of Jo's plane is found, leaving Cork and his family nothing to do but mourn her death.

    Six months pass, the spring thaw has begun, and Cork has done his best as a single father, when the wife of the man who owned and flew the plane calls on Cork's investigative skills. An unlawful death suit has been filed against her husband's estate, charging that he had gotten drunk the night before the flight disappeared and was too hungover to navigate his way through the storm. The widow and her attorney have credible evidence suggesting her husband didn't even fly the plane. But if he didn't, who did? And where did they take Jo?

    Cork returns to Wyoming just as the snows in the mountains are receding. This time, he's not only a grieving husband but a hired investigator, here to crack the apparent code of silence surrounding the missing plane. And this time, the locals aren't so welcoming. Cork finds himself going head-to-head with a shady sheriff and threats from the Northern Arapaho, who are somehow involved in the tragedy. In the meantime, he has become the target of some brutal assassins hired to put his curiosity permanently to rest.

    What keeps Cork going every day, knowing it could be his last, is the thought that Jo might not have been taken from him just yet--that she could, in fact, be waiting for him in the hard heart of Heaven's Keep.

    Heaven's Keep has it all. A mystery that will have you stumped, a fascinating look at the traditions, folklore, and current-day politics of Native Americans, and a drama that will have you embracing your loved ones at the close of each and every chapter. It is a nail-biting suspense from a writer soon to be on the top of everyone's must-read list. --Vince Flynn




    Review

    "There's a reason why William Kent Krueger is known as a writer's writer. His stories are works of art, literary wonders that beautifully capture a sense of place while they deliver a powerful emotional punch." -- Tess Gerritsen

    Product Details

    • File Size: 3681 KB
    • Print Length: 337 pages
    • Publisher: Atria Books; Reprint edition (August 20, 2009)
    • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B002LZTI6O
    • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #21,433 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    4.4 out of 5 stars
    (140)
    4.4 out of 5 stars
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    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Good new installment in the series September 5, 2009
    Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
    Opinion Only - No Story Spoilers

    This is the ninth novel in the Cork O'Connor series, and wouldn't be the best starting point for new readers into the series. This book takes a different approach than his others do and depends (to a point) on the reader being familiar with the characters already. Having read the series to date, I really enjoyed the story, and read it in two days. The first half of the book has little character development (ninth book in the series), and jumps right into the story of the disappearance of and search for Jo O'Connor and others, and Cork's coming to terms with the situation. The second part of the book is more like the rest of the series. Overall, I found it captivating and an easy read that became hard to put down.

    I had the feeling that Thunder Bay would be the last in the Cork O'Connor series after completing it and was pleasantly surprised by the release of the next book, Red Knife, which I really enjoyed as well. This latest turn in Heaven's Keep may mark the end, or it may in fact mark a turning point toward a new direction in a series that might otherwise be limited by geographic location and relative isolation.

    William Kent Krueger's Cork O'Connor series was recommended to me by Amazon about the time that Blood Hollow came out, because I had enjoyed series novels by Steve Hamilton and C.J.Box. After purchasing and enjoying Iron Lake, I ordered the next three novels in the series and enjoyed each book better than the last, and felt that WKK's writing improved with each one. Each story is built slightly off the last one, as series are prone to do, while still remaining fresh and captivating.
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    9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
    Format:Hardcover
    She left him angry. And when her flight went down somewhere over Wyoming, all private detective Cork O'Connor could think was that he should have apologized, said something...anything but let their last words be those of love.

    In the days immediately following the plane's disappearance, Cork and his teenage son, Stephen, head up to the desolation of Heaven's Keep, Wyoming where the FAA received the doomed plane's last message. With storms coming, and with the huge desolation of snow-covered mountain and Indian reservation, their effort to find Jo is practically hopeless. Still, they're encouraged by the word that a group of snowmobilers had heard a low-flying plane, and that a sometimes drunk Indian had a vision of the plane landing in what looked like a baby's crib.

    Cork's hopes fade as more storms set in. Even if Jo had survived the landing, Wyoming's brutal winter would certainly have been fatal. But when he learns that the supposed pilot might not have been the man he was supposed to be, Cork wonders if bad weather and bad luck really explained his wife's disappearance. Could some darker cause related to human greed be responsible? He swears he'll find out, but in a world of brutal poverty, finding anyone to trust becomes dangerous indeed.

    Author William Kent Krueger writes convincingly of the desolation of Indian country, of the poverty that afflicts reservation Indians, and of the mixed blessing that gambling casinos, with their addictions and connections to organized crimes, can bring. The story really takes two parts connected only by Cork's ongoing search for his wife--first the hunt for the plane and second, the search for the truth about the substitute pilot. From a mystery perspective, the first half is all setup.
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    6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Heaven's Keep December 7, 2009
    Format:Hardcover
    "Heaven's Keep" opens one morning as Jo Corcoran, near Casper, Wyoming, prepares to and does board a charter plane which will take her and her fellow passengers to Seattle, Washington. Other than Jo, the others are all Native Americans. They are all "part of a committee tasked with drafting recommendations for oversight of Indian gaming casinos, recommendations they've scheduled to present at the annual conference of the National Congress of American Indians." Except for Jo, all those aboard have a tribal affiliation: Eastern Shoshone, Northern Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Ojibwe. They are told that stormy weather is due and snow is moving into the Rockies.

    In the North Country of Aurora, Minnesota, Corcoran ("Cork") O'Connor, no longer County Sheriff, is now considering seeking employment as Deputy Sheriff, but his replacement, Sheriff Marsha Dross, is unsure how he would like taking orders from an officer he himself had trained. [The other woman unsure of the wisdom of the move is Cork's beloved wife, Jo, and they had a bit of an argument on the subject just as she was above to leave on her mission.] Cork has been building a good reputation as a PI, but there is pending litigation that he fears will drain him and he wants the security of a regular job again. The litigation involved deals with, as do so many things in the "rez" areas, development of the land: how much and what kind, and to what end, and to say there is controversy is to understate the matter, especially where the gaming casinos come into the picture.

    All those thoughts fly right out of Cork's mind when he finds that the chartered plane with Jo aboard has disappeared from radar over the Wyoming mountains, and no contact has been made with the pilot.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    4.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected reading
    I was not looking forward to reading this book after reading some of the reviews. But it was the next in the series so I bought it and was pleasantly surprised by the time I was... Read more
    Published 1 month ago by carol jones
    4.0 out of 5 stars Did not care for ending, didn't fit the rest of the story
    Just when I thought the series had gone downhill a bit, I read Heaven's Keep. Wow, glad I did, a lot of twists/turns, but I don't really get the ending, the Mexico connection, that... Read more
    Published 1 month ago by S. Turner
    5.0 out of 5 stars Minnesota, here you come
    great read, especially if you are from Minnesota
    Published 1 month ago by Elizabeth Van Tassell
    5.0 out of 5 stars best of breed
    Much more intuitive and sensitive and sad. I couldn't put it down. The best book of the series so far.
    Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Love his books
    Published 2 months ago by ROBERTA BEHARRELL
    2.0 out of 5 stars Two Stars
    Every time I got to chapter 21 the book would go back to chapter 7. Very irritating!
    Published 2 months ago by Andrea Jann
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    everything was perfect
    Published 2 months ago by Donna Myrick
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    okay
    Published 2 months ago by Tim Unruh
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    good book
    Published 3 months ago by D. E. McConnell
    2.0 out of 5 stars disappointed
    Not as good as the other 13 I've read .it was wordy and boring in spots,however, I'm looking forward to the next Cork O,Conner book
    Published 4 months ago by Catherine
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    More About the Author

    Raised in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon, William Kent Krueger briefly attended Stanford University--before being kicked out for radical activities. After that, he logged timber, worked construction, tried his hand at freelance journalism, and eventually ended up researching child development at the University of Minnesota. He currently makes his living as a full-time author. He's been married for over 40 years to a marvelous woman who is an attorney. He makes his home in St. Paul, a city he dearly loves.

    Krueger writes a mystery series set in the north woods of Minnesota. His protagonist is Cork O'Connor, the former sheriff of Tamarack County and a man of mixed heritage--part Irish and part Ojibwe. His work has received a number of awards, including the Minnesota Book Award, the Loft-McKnight Fiction Award, the Anthony Award, the Barry Award, the Dilys Award, and the Friends of American Writers Prize. His last five novels were all New York Times bestsellers.

    "Ordinary Grace," his stand-alone novel published in 2013, received the Edgar Award, given by the Mystery Writers of America in recognition for the best novel published in that year. "Windigo Island," number fourteen in his Cork O'Connor series, will be released in August 2014. Visit his website at www.williamkentkrueger.com.

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    Second Guesses
    I asked the same question after reading this book. I thoroughly enjoyed all of the previous Cork O'Connor novels and although the author really puts his characters through hell I had come to trust that they would come through, although scarred. The author let me down this time and I am having... Read More
    Mar 11, 2011 by Amazon Customer |  See all 2 posts
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