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Genre: Mystery/Suspense/Thriller, Suspense
As if harsh and unyielding elements aren't enough to make for a chilling tale, the always intriguing Barr drags in isolation, packs of wolves, primitive conditions and a collection of suspicious characters locked in close quarters. Her latest will have readers wanting to race to the end to find out what happens. They shouldn't. Just enjoy the extraordinary buildup and understand the conclusion is totally satisfying.
In January, Isle Royale on Lake Superior is a cold wasteland, and park ranger Anna Pigeon is assigned to a team of researchers studying wolf behavior. Along for the ride are two scientists from Homeland Security who have an eye to shutting down the 50-year-old study and opening the park during the winter so the government can protect the narrow border with Canada.
Soon, the wolf packs start behaving oddly, and giant wolf prints are found. Suddenly there's talk of a mythical wolf-dog hybrid, and perhaps reason to continue the study. But when one of the scientists is killed, allegedly by a pack of rampaging wolves, things take a sinister turn. Contending with no electricity or running water, intermittent phone service and subzero temperatures, Anna has to find out if the real killer is man or beast. (Putnam, Apr., 384 pp., $24.95)
Reviewed By: Pat Cooper
Published: April 2008