It's elk season in the Rockies, but this year one hunter is stalking a different kind of prey. When the call comes in on the radio, Joe Pickett can hardly believe his ears: game wardens have found a hunter dead at a camp in the mountains - strung up, gutted, skinned, and beheaded, as if he were the elk he'd been pursuing. A spent cartridge and a poker chip lie next to his body. Ripples of horror spread through the community, and with a possibly psychotic killer on the loose, Governor Rulon is forced to end hunting season early for the first time in state history - outraging hunters and potentially crippling the state's income from the loss of hunting license revenue. But when the brutal murders eerily coincide with the arrival of radical anti-hunting activist Klamath Moore, Pickett knows the Governor's ruling is the least of his worries. Are the murders the work of a deranged activist or of a lone psychopath with a personal vendetta? As always, Joe Pickett is the governor's go-to man, and he's put on the case to track the murderous hunter, as more bodies - and poker chips - turn up.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Promising start, disappointing finish
This was my first "Joe Pickett" book (Pickett is the main character), and I found him to be an interesting protagonist - weathered, vulnerable, cynical, but with a non-threatening "manly" way about him. Anyway, the book starts out strong by speaking to you from the killer's thoughts before introducing you to Pickett and his support cast - a technique, while manipulative, succeeds in reeling you in. The supporting players (bosses, family, friends, co-workers, antagonists) are cartoonish and exagerrated, but are at least amusing in their contributions to Joe Pickett's world, and help underscore Joe's reflective demeanor. Unfortunately, although you're initially drawn into the story and the characters, you see the big "bombshell" twist in the story long before the book ends - which leaves a lot of time for you to wonder if there's another twist, if you're really that smart, or if C.J. Box simply came up short. I think he just came up short.
Very slow. The last 1/2 of book was pretty good. Difficult to follow over all. Not a favorite.