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Thursday, February 22, 2018

#Audiobook #Review: 2 out of 5 stars for A Cold Day for Murder by Dana Stabenow

SERIES: Kate Shugak, Book #1
AUTHOR: Dana Stabenow
NARRATOR: Marguerite Gavin
PUBLISHER: Brilliance Audio
PUBLICATION DATE: October 18, 2011 (first published 1992)
FORMAT: Unabridged audiobook
LENGTH: 5 hrs 31 mins
GENRE: Mystery

Eighteen months ago, Aleut Kate Shugak quit her job investigating sex crimes for the Anchorage DA’s office and retreated to her father’s homestead in a national park in the interior of Alaska. But the world has a way of beating a path to her door, however remote. In the middle of one of the bitterest Decembers in recent memory ex-boss — and ex-lover — Jack Morgan shows up with an FBI agent in tow. A Park ranger with powerful relatives is missing, and now the investigator Jack sent in to look for him is missing, too.

Reluctantly, Kate, along with Mutt, her half-wolf, half-husky sidekick, leaves her wilderness refuge to follow a frozen trail through the Park, twenty thousand square miles of mountain and tundra sparsely populated with hunters, fishermen, trappers, mushers, pilots and homesteaders. Her formidable grandmother and Native chief, Ekaterina Shugak, is — for reasons of her own — against Kate’s investigation; her cousin, Martin, may be Kate’s prime suspect; and the local trooper, Jim Chopin, is more interested in Kate than in her investigation. In the end, the sanctuary she sought after five and a half years in the urban jungles may prove more lethal than anything she left behind in the city streets of Anchorage.


I've seen this book at the library and wanted to read it for a while. When Audible featured it as a Daily Deal, I couldn't resist buying it. However, the book left me a bit underwhelmed.

Let's start with the pluses! I actually love the main character, Kate Shugak. The reason why she retired from the District Attorney's office is because she was involved in a knife fight with a child molester (he lost) and she was injured. She had the highest conviction rate of anyone in the DA's office, and the FBI tried to recruit her. Kate is tough as nails, and she is perfectly happy living on her remote and isolated homestead in barren Alaska.

Kate's former flame and boss, Jack Morgan, pays her a visit and pleads for her help in locating the national park's ranger who has mysteriously disappeared. Jack also has a FBI agent in tow, because the ranger's father is a congressman from Ohio. The investigator that Jack sent to look for the ranger has now disappeared as well. Kate agrees to help out, but she is going to wish that she hadn't!

I thought that this was going to be more of a cat and mouse type of book, with Kate trying to stay one step ahead (or annihilate) the bad guys. She seems the perfect heroine to do that, but it wasn't that type of book. For the first third of the book, Kate was preparing for her search. Finally, when the search started, it was just a lot of talking and very little action. The pace of the story was very slow, and I actually found it to be a bit boring. It won the 1993 Edgar Award, so perhaps I am in the minority. Even so, I do think this series has potential, and there are 21 books published so far. I do love Kate as well as the Alaskan setting, so I am willing to give this series another chance and will continue with the next book in the series, A Fatal Thaw.

This book was narrated by Marguerite Gavin, and she did a fine job but I felt that her voice didn't quite match the main character. Stabenow describes how Kate was slashed across her throat from ear to ear and how the injury damaged her voice and left her with a nasty scar. As a result, I expected Kate to sound more hoarse or gruff. Even still, I am glad that I listened over reading because listening makes it easier to get through a slow story.


2 stars!! Meh, it was just "okay."

This book qualifies as:
#7 for my 2018 Audiobook Challenge
#7 for my Mount TBR Reading Challenge 2018
#11 for my Beat the Backlist 2018 Challenge
#9 for my The Backlist Reader Challenge 2018
#7 for my New Authors 2018 Reading Challenge
#7 for my 2018 Try Something New Challenge
#10 for my Blydyn Square Books 2018 Reading Challenge
#5 for my 2018 Badass Books Reading Challenge 
#11 for my 2018 Full House Reading Challenge
#10 for my GWB Book Bingo 2018
Task #27 for my 2018 Reading Challenge (Linz the Bookworm)
#5A for my 2018 Literary Escapes Challenge
#11A for my Good Rule Reading Challenge
#40 for my Monthly Mix-up Mania
#8 for my 2018 Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge
#1 for my 2018 A to Z Reading Challenge
#4 for my 2018 Platypire Diversity Challenge
#5 for my Cloak and Dagger Reading Challenge
#16 for my Bookish Bingo Winter 2017-18
#8 for my COYER Winter Switch
Task #8 for my Goodreads Winter Scavenger Challenge: Northern Lights
#5 for my Chapter Break February Bookish Bingo 2018


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