At the start of Edgar-winner Box’s crackling 17th Joe Pickett novel (after 2016’s Off the Grid), the Wyoming game warden is aboard a small plane in search of hunter Dave Farkus, “currently an unemployed layabout collecting dubious disability checks,” who has gone on the run in the frozen high country. With the aid of an infrared spotting device, Joe locates Dave—right before the fugitive is fatally shot. Joe quickly settles on a suspect: erstwhile rodeo star Dallas Cates, just released from the prison where Joe helped send him 18 months earlier. Dallas’s motive? Scorched-earth revenge on Joe. To that end, the diabolically clever Dallas has recruited a gang of psychopathic miscreants for the ages. A sequence in which a female meth head attempts to kill Joe’s wife and daughters with an ax ranks as the scariest in any Pickett novel to date; a close second goes to a confrontation between Joe and Dallas’s imprisoned, quadriplegic mother. In short, this outing is the most suspenseful yet in this world-class series, setting a new standard for Box. Author tour. Agent: Ann Rittenberg, Ann Rittenberg Literary Agency. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/16/2017 Release date: 03/21/2017 Genre: Fiction
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