Series: Cork O'Connor

Audio Review: Boundary Waters by William Kent Krueger

Posted February 22, 2017 by Jonetta in Book Review | | 2 Comments

Audio Review: Boundary Waters by William Kent KruegerBoundary Waters by William Kent Krueger
Series: Cork O'Connor #2
Narrator: David Chandler
Published by Recorded Books on May 18, 2010
Genres: Mystery, Suspense
Format: Audiobook
Length: 10 hours, 52 minutes
Source: Purchased
Audio | Goodreads

The Quetico-Superior Wilderness: more than two million acres of forest, white-water rapids, and uncharted islands on the Canadian/American border. Somewhere in the heart of this unforgiving territory, a young woman named Shiloh -- a country-western singer at the height of her fame -- has disappeared.
Her father arrives in Aurora, Minnesota, to hire Cork O'Connor to find his daughter, and Cork joins a search party that includes an ex-con, two FBI agents, and a ten-year-old boy. Others are on her trail as well -- men hired not just to find her, but to kill her.

As the expedition ventures deeper into the wilderness, strangers descend on Aurora, threatening to spill blood on the town's snowy streets. Meanwhile, out on the Boundary Waters, winter falls hard. Cork's team of searchers loses contact with civilization, and like the brutal winds of a Minnesota blizzard, death -- violent and sudden -- stalks them.


Cork O’Connor is contacted by Willie Raye to help find his daughter, Shiloh, who’s disappeared. She’s a famous Country & Western singer who apparently has chosen to remove herself into the Quetico-Superior Wilderness for some self reflection. The Feds have also inserted themselves into the search because they believe she now remembers information about her mother’s murder 13-years ago. Unfortunately, there are other dark forces at play as others are out to find and kill her.

As with the first story, the setting is an important element of the story and Indian lore is featured prominently in every aspect of the plot. The complexity of the boundary waters (between the Minnesota and Canadian borders) added to the mystery and sense of isolation. There was a mystical quality threaded throughout even in the midst of sinister characters who were quite chilling. I liked how the points of view of the searches and those waiting back in Aurora were juxtaposed as it heightened the tension with subtle clues all over the place. I guessed the right villain because of them but had to constantly test my theory.

This was a lush story, burdened somewhat by the body count, but enriched by the storytelling of one of the characters, a young Native American boy who shared what was passed to him by his uncle. It was a perfect illustration of the rich culture that was key to finding Shiloh and made this story special. I opted to switch to the audio format for this series because I believed a good narration performance would increase my enjoyment and boy did it. Highly recommend not only this book but this format. This series is living up to my expectations.

Listen to a sample!

About William Kent Krueger

Raised in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon, William Kent Krueger briefly attended Stanford University—before being kicked out for radical activities. After that, he logged timber, worked construction, tried his hand at freelance journalism, and eventually ended up researching child development at the University of Minnesota. He currently makes his living as a full-time author. He’s been married for over 40 years to a marvelous woman who is an attorney. He makes his home in St. Paul, a city he dearly loves.

Krueger writes a mystery series set in the north woods of Minnesota. His protagonist is Cork O’Connor, the former sheriff of Tamarack County and a man of mixed heritage—part Irish and part Ojibwe. His work has received a number of awards, including the Minnesota Book Award, the Loft-McKnight Fiction Award, the Anthony Award, the Barry Award, the Dilys Award, and the Friends of American Writers Prize. His last five novels were all New York Times bestsellers.

“Ordinary Grace,” his stand-alone novel published in 2013, received the Edgar Award, given by the Mystery Writers of America in recognition for the best novel published in that year. “Windigo Island,” number fourteen in his Cork O’Connor series, was released in August 2014.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

Review: Iron Lake by William Kent Krueger

Review: Iron Lake by William Kent Krueger

Posted October 24, 2013 by Jonetta in Misc | 0 Comments

    This was the book selected by my Mystery & Suspense group for discussion this month. I’d never heard of the author or this series and my group came through yet again in selecting a really good story.   Corcoran “Cork” O’Connor is the former sheriff of Aurora, Minnesota. He’s separated from his wife, has three children and is secretly seeing someone. His life is definitely off balance but he’s very much grounded in his Indian heritage. He inadvertently stumbles upon the dead body of the most powerful man in the county and the new sheriff quickly rules it a suicide. Of course, Cork believes differently.   Even though he hasn’t been the sheriff for at least six months, the town still sees that […]