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Sulfur Springs: A Novel (Cork O'Connor Mystery Series) Hardcover – August 22, 2017
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Praise for Sulfur Springs:
"Totally un-let-go-able, a can't miss for fans and a new obsession for new readers." (Globe Gazette (Iowa))
"A blistering Wild West mystery." (Minneapolis Star Tribune)
"Remarkable...masterful...book from an author who never disappoints." (Book Reporter)
"Realistic and believable…Cork O’Connor is a worthy protagonist.” (New York Journal of Books)
Praise for Manitou Canyon:
"Explores the tension between belief and truth, between protecting a sacred place and embracing technological progress, between having empathy for a cause and taking action to defend it...Krueger has crafted a gripping thriller...steeped in the mythology of American Indian tribes of Minnesota...[a] deeply spiritual novel. Read it with your heart." (Minneapolis Star Tribune)
“A mystery made up of several shiver-inducing levers . . . [with] a plot that keeps tightening around O’Connor and the granddaughter—and the reader’s nerves. A first-rate addition to this series.” (Booklist)
"A gripping thriller." (Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel)
Praise for Windigo Island:
“A punch-to-the-gut blend of detective story and investigative fiction.... Krueger has written an investigative novel as blistering and crucial in its indictments of contemporary evil as The Jungle.” (Booklist (starred review))
“Krueger paints a vivid picture of the sordid cycle of poverty, abuse, alcoholism, and runaway (or throwaway) children on the reservation, and reminds us of the evil of men all too willing to exploit the innocent.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“Krueger at his page-turning best — but this time with a higher purpose.” (Duluth News Tribune)
About the Author
William Kent Krueger is the award-winning author of seventeen previous Cork O’Connor novels, including Tamarack County and Windigo Island, as well as the novel Ordinary Grace, winner of the 2014 Edgar Award for best novel. He lives in the Twin Cities with his family. Visit his website at WilliamKentKrueger.com.
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Cork has now married Henry’s great-niece, Rainy, but Rainy’s son Peter is in trouble, the nature of that trouble not yet understood or defined. Ex-military, Peter is a strong, sensitive sort who was for a time addicted to painkillers. He spent some time in a posh clinic to re-hab, then worked for an Arizona winery and is now in the wind. He appears to have been involved with a person named Rodriguez and that relationship may, in some way, have involved murder. Cork and Rainy get on the first available plane to Arizona. The center of the action is a fictional town called Cadiz, which is located south of Tucson. We are thus in the Tucson-Nogales corridor with multiple visits to the local mountains and their abandoned mines.
The mines may hold new riches if they are reopened. In the meantime they may shelter would-be immigrants and/or the wares of drug cartels. The author sets up the search-for-Peter story within a milieu that includes border guards, drug traffickers, coyotes, winemakers, real estate developers, an aging bi-plane pilot and a secret, sort-of supremacist group. We also meet Rainy’s first husband, himself a member of a Mexican drug cartel, who is willing to invest time and resources in the effort to find his son. His entry adds sexual tension and jealousy to the quest story.
Cork’s job is to find Peter, help protect Rainy, and, in particular, dodge the bad guys when it’s never really clear who those individuals actually are. The principal theme of the story is the nature of trust—its importance in marriage and its importance within society.
WKK manages to capture the local setting with all of the specificity and intensity that he brings to the northwoods, no mean feat given its essential barrenness, oppressive heat and a sky full of vultures rather than the tops of evergreen trees. The story is strong, the characters interesting, the romantic subplot effective. WKK’s novels are all excellent, so it is difficult to actually ‘rank’ them. SULFUR SPRINGS is a fine addition to the series.
Fascinating characters abound. Peter’s father and Rainy’s ex-husband, Gilberto Mondragon, is also in the area. Rainy and Gilberto join forces to find Peter, an action that makes Cork wonder about his wife’s intentions and loyalty, but he is certain that he can trust his wife not to get emotionally involved again with her ex.
Besides the drug smuggling and illegal immigration activities we have others in the country who are quickly establishing claims to abandoned mines in hope that the mining industry will become profitable again. Or perhaps they have other purposes in mind for these hard-to-find natural storage areas. Then there is a contingent of border patrol fellows whose loyalty is suspect, along with the woman mayor who has an agenda of her own that doesn’t quite line up with ordinary civic priorities. Cork has no legal authority in Arizona but he does help the local sheriff and other lawmen with his experience and law enforcement talents.
One motto is often voiced in the book by various characters: Do not trust anyone except those in your family. Time and again it proves true in this complex plot.