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Tamarack County    by William Kent Krueger order for
Tamarack County
by William Kent Krueger
Order:  USA  Can
Atria, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Tamarack County follows Trickster's Point as the thirteenth in this excellent series that began with Iron Lake. The lead is ex-cop Corcoran 'Cork' O'Connor, who is part Irish and part Anishinaabe Indian and lives in northern Minnesota. Cork's wife was murdered in a previous episode and he has recently become close to Rainy Bisonette, niece of his spiritual mentor, Henry Meloux. He adores his new grandson Waaboo (adopted by his daughter Jenny in Northwest Angle).

As Tamarack County opens, elderly Evelyn Carter (wife of an irascible Judge) has gone missing and Cork joins the search party, helping Sheriff Marsha Dross in every way he can. They fail to find the missing woman. Meanwhile Stephen has been seeing a great deal of Marlee Daychild. After Marlee's dog is killed, Stephen calls his dad for help and Cork starts to spend time at the Daychild home and to feel an attraction to Marlee's lovely mother Stella, despite his prior commitment to Rainy.

After Henry Meloux phones Stephen, concerned about recent vision dreams, Stephen and Marlee are almost killed. Gradually, it becomes clear that there are links between these events and a very cold case in which Cork played a small role early in his career. And the man who was convicted is still in jail. Who is the majimaniddo, the monster responsible for all the violence? When it erupts again, it is to attack someone very close to Cork's heart.

The spiritual aspect of this series is beginning to remind me of Robert Tanenbaum's thrillers. To the Anishinaabe, Cork is Ogichidaa, 'someone who stood between his people and bad things.' Stephen is learning to be a healer like Henry Meloux. Jenny is the nurturer. And their sister Anne, though she has a crisis of faith in this episode, has a clear calling, and saves her father from himself this time. I highly recommend this entire series to you and in particular the latest episode, Tamarack County.

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