A Book Spy Review: ‘Sulfur Springs’ by William Kent Krueger

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As Cork O’Connor prepares to celebrate July 4th with his wife, children, and grandkids, the fireworks come early when an explosive phone call flips the O’Connors’ world upside down.

Moments before they’re about to head out and join their family to watch fireworks, Cork and his wife Rainy Bisonette receive a disturbing phone call from Rainy’s son, Peter. Living in Arizona, Peter has come a long way from his troubled past–which included a serious drug addiction. So when he leaves a voicemail on Rainy’s phone indicating he’s in trouble, she and Cork become immediately concerned.

More shocking is the message itself, which is garbled beyond recognition except for a few words. What did come through loud and clear, though, is that Peter is being pursued by people who believe he killed someone named Rodriguez. When Peter doesn’t answer or return calls, Cork and Rainy fly to southern Arizona to look into the situation.

Upon landing in Coronado County, Arizona, the hits keep coming for Rainy and Cork, who uses the skills he developed and honed over a long career in law enforcement to investigate Peter’s whereabouts. But the deeper they dig into Peter’s past, the more they discover he’s not quite who he’s claimed to be for the past few years.

Eventually, Cork follows Peter’s trail to the small town of Sulfur Springs, where he learns that a man named Rodriguez is the leader of a cartel known for smuggling things into America from Mexico–kickstarting a fiery plot that blazes hotter than the scorching Arizona sun.

Taking Cork out of Minnesota is a brilliant move by William Kent Krueger. After fifteen novels, getting Cork out of his element provides a breath of fresh air for his long-running series, and longtime fans will get a kick out of seeing O’Connor struggle to adapt to his new setting.

As the plot plows forward, Cork finds that it’s not just Peter who’s been keeping secrets–Rainy too has something she’d like to keep hidden, which eats at Cork even when he pretends it doesn’t. The added suspense is like pouring gasoline on the fire, making William Kent Krueger’s latest novel one of his best thrillers yet.

If you’re a fan of C.J. Box’s Joe Pickett series or Craig Johnson’s Walt Longmire books, you have got to meet William Kent Krueger’s Cork O’Connor! 

Book Details

Author: William Kent Krueger 
Series: Cork O’Connor #17
Pages: 320 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 150114734X
Publisher: Atria Books
Release Date: August 22, 2017
Book Spy Rating: 7.5/10
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