The Hunting Ground

J. Robert Janes. Open Road/MysteriousPress.com, $14.99 trade paper (318p) ISBN 978-1-4804-0073-3
With this so-so stand-alone historical, Janes takes a break from his St.-Cyr and Kohler WWII series (Bellringer, etc.), which teams a Gestapo man with a Surete investigator in Occupied France. After the war, Lily Hollis is guilt-ridden over having survived Bergen-Belsen when her sister and two children did not. In the confusion of the camp's liberation, it's assumed that she perished as well, a mistake that enables her to assume the role of avenger, sending "little black pasteboard coffins" to her intended victims (apparently valuing instilling fear over making her mission easier). Her targets include a corrupt French inspector who worked hand-in-glove with the Germans, but who seeks to avoid her wrath by noting that he was "cleared" of wrongdoing by the Resistance. Soap opera-ish elements—before the war, Lily's husband slept with her sister—detract from the drama. The prose is also not up to Janes's usual standard, as shown by some florid love scenes. (Apr.)
Reviewed on: 02/24/2014
Release date: 04/01/2013
Ebook - 318 pages - 978-1-4804-0067-2
Hardcover - 318 pages - 978-1-4804-8100-8
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 318 pages - 978-1-4804-0072-6
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