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Blue Heaven: A Novel Paperback – June 23, 2009
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“A thriller with a heart.” ―The Boston Globe
“One of the best thrillers of the year. It kept me up most of the night, the way few books have ever done. C.J. Box owes me a night's sleep!” ―Tess Gerritsen
“A first-rate thriller, peopled by complex characters and unpredictable action. Don't miss it.” ―T. Jefferson Parker
“A first-rate, edge-of-your seat read.” ―Omaha World-Herald
“A non-stop thrill ride--a provocative suspense novel that has you rooting for the characters every step of the way.” ―Harlan Coben
“An unusual, intelligent thriller that resonates long after the last page is turned.” ―George Pelecanos
“A suspenseful tour de force.” ―Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Relentless. C.J. Box sucked me in with good cops, bad cops, and missing money, then blind-sided me with unexpected twists and surprises in this novel of clashing cultures and dark secrets. Box delivers the goods!” ―Robert Crais
Top Customer Reviews
Reading award-winners is not a strategy I often follow, but I like the Edgar awards (and the Mystery Writers of America), because they seem relatively free of the pretension, vanity, and faddish-ness that pervades other literary awards. Therefore I at least try to peruse the fiction nominees and winners. There are so many books out there, and without the Edgars I would never have been aware of Mr. Box's novel. So thank you, MWA.
Now, back to "Blue Heaven". Other reviewers have perceptively noted that this is a modern Western, in ways both subtle and obvious. The obvious western touches include the setting--it takes place in the Mountain West (North Idaho)--and a hero who is, literally, a cowboy. The less-obvious Western hallmarks are found in the narrative structure. Much like a classic Western, the bad guys are known from the beginning (it is not a mystery in the classic sense). Furthermore, the novel builds to an inevitable showdown between the hero and the villains, a final, frenzied scene of violence that would not be out of place in a dusty, sun-bleached frontier town of the late 19th century.
Although the villains are revealed at the outset, Mr. Box takes more time to explain the motives for their crimes, but the "why" is never really important.Read more ›
So when I saw that C. J. Box won this year's Edgar Awards, I quickly checked it out from my local library.
That was yesterday. Today, I finished the last page of an immensely satisfying book. BLUE HEAVEN is a story about two children who witness a murder, the old rancher who vows to protect them, and a conspiracy of retired LA police officers who want to shut them up.
Each chapter propels the story along from one of several different characters' perspective, and though some of these characters make mistakes, we find ourselves rooting for almost all of them.
Plus, the novel slowly reveals the nature and depth of conspiracy over the course of the book that's very rewarding. C. J. Box shows us how that conspiracy has ensnared the small Idaho community BLUE HEAVEN is set in.
And, like many modern Westerns such as TRUE GRIT or UNFORGIVEN, BLUE HEAVEN paints a picture of a small-town lifestyle that is modern suburban development and big box stores are eating up "like a snack".
Box writes in clean, economical prose that captures the setting, characters, and tension in the plot almost perfectly. Very highly recommended.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good writer and good story. Box always has interesting plots. I would give 4 1/2 stars.Published 2 days ago by California gal
I really enjoyed this story. Set in the western US I was struck by the contrast between the "locals' and the new arrivals. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Kindle Customer
One of the best of C. J. Box's novels that I have read so far...Published 5 days ago by cbsully01886
This is one of C. J. Box stand alone novels. His novels aren't complicated but pretty easy to read and great for giving you a way to relax. Read morePublished 18 days ago by dswpoodles
Some errors as seen thru the eyes of an old cop but not enough to make it anything but a five star.Published 21 days ago by Dwayne Herman
Love C J Box but this novel had a confusing and muddled ending.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer