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Boundary Waters

1 rating: 4.0
a novel by William Kent Krueger

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Author: William Kent Krueger
Genre: mystery/suspense
Date Published: 05-01-1999
1 review about Boundary Waters

"Oh, the ...joys of living...the cool silver shock of the plunge in a pools living waters." Robert B

  • Nov 29, 2010
Boundary Waters is a canoe area on the Canadian/American border in Minnesota.

Cork O'Connor, the former sheriff in Aurora, Minn, is asked to find a young country and western singer who is missing. He is reluctant to do so but then thinks of his own children and agrees to help find the girl.

Shiloh is the daughter of William, "Arkansas Willie" Raye, a gay former country and western singer who now manages Shiloh's record company. Shiloh has been sending weekly letters to Willie but they suddenly stopped. Willie states that Shiloh needed a place for quiet but has also been depressed and with a winter storm coming, he's worried.

Others are also looking for Shiloh. Federal police believe that she may be a witness to her mother's killing by Italian gangster, Vincent Bernadetti, a casino owner in Las Vegas. Apparently, the girl had amnesia but is now coming out of it and remembering things.

A studio musician, Elizabeth Dobson, claimed that Shiloh sent her a number of letters with important information in them. However, Dobson was murdered and police think it's because of the letters.

Agents from the FBI become involved and force their way into the hunt for Shiloh. In this, we see one of the author's themes where members of the federal government take advantage of Native Americans by threats and intimidation.

The plot driven novel shows us the resource fullness of Cork O'Connor as he leads the search party.

Other members of the search group are: the Federal Agents, Arkansas Willie, a native American who is a former convict and the man's ten-year-old son, Louis Two Knives. Louis is a well mannered boy who learned about the wilderness from his grandfather. Louis is actually the trail leader and relates stories about the Indian history and traditions to pass the time as the group continues their search.

There is a complication when we learn that still one more person is searching for Shiloh. This person is intent on finding her and preventing her from returning, alive.

The author has presented a compelling novel, rich with Indian history and  with a number of plot twists. In this, the author is like a bullfighter. He waves the cape before the bull and when the bull thinks it knows where the matador is, the cape moves and the bull is fooled. So is the story. We follow the action and then something new is introduced and that changes things completely.

I enjoyed  the story and believe that the author's theme is about the beauty of nature and that Native Americans attempt to live by nature and respect it while many white people destroy it and use it only for their own goals.

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November 30, 2010
Paul and Bethany; Thanks for your comments on my review. Krueger is an excellent writer and it's enjoyable when he brings in Native American history and legend to his books. A number of people have stated that Krueger is the heir apparent to the great Tony Hillerman. I bet Krueger doesn't mind that idea one bit. Mike
November 29, 2010
I love canoeing so the title caught my attention as well. Nice review, Michael.
November 29, 2010
This sounds like a great story. The title caught my attention, as my father used to go to the Boundary Waters every summer. I'll have to recommend this book to him. Thanks!
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