Eskens’s latest novel featuring detective Max Rupert begins with the Minneapolis homicide cop on a frozen lake in Superior National Forest, facing the killer of his pregnant wife. The big question: is he there as lawman or vigilante? Max continues to ask himself that for nearly the whole novel, which recounts his surprising discovery that his beloved wife Jenni’s death was not a hit-and-run accident but a planned assassination. What follows is his fury-driven solo struggle to find the killer. If Eskens’s tense, fast-paced thriller weren’t hard-boiled enough, actor Bray’s hoarse narration, simmering with anger, carries it to into truly suspenseful territory. His Rupert isn’t just a cop gone rogue, he’s almost uncontrollable. There aren’t many notable women in the novel other than Max’s very understanding partner and a pistol-toting Russian who provides assistance. Bray indicates a change in gender with a slight alteration in delivery (and in the latter case, accent) without slowing the novel’s pell-mell progress or softening its hard mood. It’s a lively performance by Bray, who manages to keep the energy up through to the very end. A Seventh Street paperback. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 11/27/2017 Release date: 10/01/2017 Genre: Audio
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