New York Times bestselling author William Kent Krueger delivers another phenomenal adventure his readers will devour with Fox Creek, the 19th book in his Cork O’Connor series.
The story opens when Cork is approached by a man claiming to be Lou Morriseau, who is said to be in search of his wife, Dolores. According to the stranger, his wife left home about a week prior to find a man by the name of Henry Meloux, but never returned. He also claims that Dolores and Henry Meloux have been having an affair. Now he wants to hire Cork to locate his wife.
Right off the jump, Cork knows something isn’t right. First of all, he knows Henry Meloux, a revered Ojibwe healer, is 100 years old. Not exactly prime age to be running around with someone else’s wife. And secondly, Cork knows Henry because he’s married to her great-niece, Rainy Bisonette, who has been with her uncle near Crow Point overseeing the cleansing sweat of a town local. It turns out that the local is, indeed, Dolores, who informs Cork that she sought out Henry for both shelter and wisdom. She also tells Cork that the man who visited him is not her husband. Realizing that the stranger is an imposter, Cork sets out to find the man’s real identity.
As the search for the truth about the stranger gets underway, Cork’s son, Stephen, mentions that he had a vision of Henry lying dead in the wilderness. That worries Cork, who feels a sense of urgency with his investigation, which is also aided by Anton Morriseau, the brother of the real Louis. Things escalate, though, when Cork returns to Henry’s cabin to find him, along with Rainy and Delores, missing. Circumstances would suggest they were taken, probably against their will, which sends Cork into overdrive as he wades deep into the Boundary Waters in search of answers . . . and his wife.
Though this is the 19th book in Krueger’s series, newcomers to the Cork franchise should have no trouble at all jumping in and following along. And oh what a trip William Kent Krueger has in store for them here, with this mysterious yet adrenaline-pumping story packed with twists, action, and a setting that lends itself perfectly to all of it. Bookreporter once called Kruger “an author who never disappoints,” and that’s true, but he’s also easily one of the most talented pure writers on the scene today. Few authors are able to build their series around a distinct location, and constantly use that setting to their advantage the way Krueger does with Northern Minnesota. Michael Connelly (Los Angeles), James Lee Burke (Louisiana), and C.J. Box (Wyoming) are a few of the others, but Krueger’s books are a completely different flavor profile, flush with Native American culture, supernatural-like elements, and hidden, thought-provoking plot devices that, though going into too much detail would be considered a spoiler, touch on numerous issues facing the world today. Moreover, Krueger’s character development is second to none, and even as he nears the twenty-book mark, the author continues to flesh out his protagionist, who is tested in new ways here, as he attempts to track a band of killers through the wilderness. All of it works so well, but it’s hard to imagine anyone else being able to pull it off.
With its quick pacing and multi-layered plot, William Kent Krueger’s Fox Creek dazzles early, sucking readers in, before giving way to a heart-thumping final act that delivers one hell of a reading experience.
Author: William Kent Krueger
Series: Cork O’Connor #19
Pages: 400 (Hardcover)
Publisher: Atria Books
Release Date: August 23, 2022
Real Book Spy Rating: 8.5/10
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