The nineteenth murder mystery book in the life of Alaskan native, Kate Shugak; PI, park rat, Aleut – five –foot – nothing of female wiles and intuition.
Author Dana Stabenow has yet to disappoint; whether she’s writing about Kate Shugak, Liam Campbell, or branching out with stand alone like Blindfold Games or Prepared for Rage, her ability to weave mystery, social relevance, and character development never ceases to amaze me. Except for killing off some of my favorite characters and making me cry, I’ve yet to finish one of her books and found it wanting.
In this newest Shugak mystery “Restless in the Grave”, Stabenow has once again managed to write about the personal and political intrigues that govern the great state of Alaska without boring me to tears; making even the historical background of tribal politics palatable. Matter of fact, she is one of the very few writers that doesn’t make my eyeballs roll to the back of my head the moment I read words like statehood, association, politician and WWI – II. She is a master at weaving murder, bad – behaving – politicians, Native American history, and family conflict into murder, buried mystery, and just enough romance to keep hope alive.
“Over a third of the Newenhan population was under eighteen,which didn’t make his job any easier, the hormonally challenged being terminally and all too often fatally prone to acts of stupidity.” ― Dana Stabenow, Restless In The Grave
And best of all, being the prude that I am, I can still get through the scattering of sexual encounters (usually brief and to the point) as well as potty mouthed character portrayal, with barely a flinch; particularly as the author is brilliant at using one or both as enhancements to her story, rather than fill in props for poorly developed plot lines.
Let’s face it; Stabenow makes even law enforcement potentially sexy.
If you want a great read, and enjoy reading about characters that have more life in them than your Uncle Carl and Auntie Susie, then I highly recommend not only Dana’s newest Shugak mystery, but going back to the beginning with “A Cold Day for Murder”
For continually keeping me entertained and wanting more, I give “Restless in the Grave” 4.5 stars.