Customer Reviews for

Breaking Point (Joe Pickett Series #13)

Average Rating 4.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Spellbinding!

Kept me on the edge of my seat and I couldn't stop reading!

posted by 5817709 on March 18, 2013

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Big disappointment

Caution: Contains spoilers

Both of the avid readers in our house have enjoyed C.J. Box's books for years, especially enjoyed his Joe Pickett books, which we keep and occasionally re-read. The everyman Joe Pickett has been an appealing character -- a family man who g...
Caution: Contains spoilers

Both of the avid readers in our house have enjoyed C.J. Box's books for years, especially enjoyed his Joe Pickett books, which we keep and occasionally re-read. The everyman Joe Pickett has been an appealing character -- a family man who gets involved in complex situations and constantly doubts if he is bright enough to solve them. The stories have incorporated balanced views of the often conflicting interests and concerns in the American West -- ranchers, hunters, tourists, environmentalists, developers, individual freedom, community responsibility. However, the last two books in the Pickett series have been major disappointments.

The latest, Breaking Point, reads like some right-wing anti-government pamphlet. The preceding one, Force of Nature, which focuses more on Nate Romanowski rather than Joe Pickett, could have been titled, Jason Bourne Wreaks Havoc Across the Mountain States. Force of Nature comes with a bullet tossing sequence that would work nicely as a comic-bookish, slow motion scene in a John Woo action movie and even includes a close encounter with Osama Bin Laden, of all people.

In Breaking Point the federal government is the primary enemy, although any level of government above Twelve Sleep County, WY is not to be trusted. Environmental regulations are excuses for destroying the dreams of average folk, including Pickett's wife Marybeth. Affirmative action puts unqualified, out-of-touch people into positions of authority. Most of the bureaucrats care only about promotions or holding on to their positions until retirement, and in either case, they will amorally follow even the most destructive orders without question. The main villain, a regional EPA official, is vindictive and evil, and he is able to pull off incredible feats. At one point, he completely flusters the maverick, out-spoken, strong-willed Wyoming Governor Rulon with merely a suggestion that the governor is showing ethnic bias. At another point, just by dropping a few names, he is able to convince the military to send in an armed drone for a missle strike against a fugitive murder suspect who is hiding out in the Wyoming mountains (with disastrous consequences, of course). Another of the breaking points in Breaking Point was the cameo appearance of Nate Romanowski near the end of the book, showing up to conduct some torture -- perhaps of the reader. It is almost as though Box's editor had advised that Romanowski is a popular character in the book series so working him into the story would improve marketability.

We still enjoy mysteries set in America's wilderness areas with solid protagonists who are not immune to human self-doubt and who have to balance their mystery-solving with family and work issues. Evidently a lot of other readers do too. Fortunately, those who were similarly disappointed with the latest offerings in the Joe Pickett series can find excellent alternatives, such as William Kent Krueger's Cork O'Connor series, Nevada Barr's Anna Pigeon series, and Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire series.

posted by SgtJimG on April 10, 2013

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  • Posted May 11, 2013

    Very enjoyable!

    I like Joe Pickett. I have read several of his stories and find them highly readable and enjoyable. C.J.Box really brings the Wyoming mountains to life with his descriptions and very likeable characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 5, 2013

    Another great story.

    As always, I enjoyed this book. I think I know what is going to happen next and then am always surprised at the end. If you like CJ Box, you will also enjoyed William Kent Kruegers books with Cork O'Cococran.


    I don't know why my order of the latest William Kent Krueger book, "Ordinary Grace" was cancelled as I still see it listed to order.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 20, 2013

    Enjoyed from cover to coverĀ 

    Enjoyed from cover to cover 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2013

    !

    Another good book by CJ

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  • Posted July 28, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    One thing you can always count on in a Joe Pickett novel: The e

    One thing you can always count on in a Joe Pickett novel: The environment and topography of Wyoming plays a vital part in the plot. This book is no exception. “Breaking Point” starts with an actual true story as its foundation: the Sackett Case, by which the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 9-0 ruling, declared that the EPA had overstepped in its dealings with the Idaho family.

    Similarly, the regional director of the EPA in Denver, began an action against Butch and Pam Roberson, acquaintances of Joe and Marybeth Pickett, setting off a maelstrom in its wake, including four deaths, a forest fire of monumental proportions, and a variety of other results. When two agents serving a compliance order arrived at a plot on which Butch was starting to build a retirement home, they were shot and buried on the property, and Butch fled into the mountains. A massive effort led by the regional director to capture Butch was begun, with Joe forced to guide a posse of agents in his wake.

    This reader could envision a much different conclusion than the one the author chose, but up until that point, I found the novel powerful, especially the forest fire scenes and Joe’s efforts to return from the mountain. It is a riveting description of the wilderness, and Joe’s return apparently sets the stage for his future efforts.

    Recommended.

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  • Posted April 19, 2013

    Fun

    Fun read as usual with Mt. Box. Several twists that surprise the reader.

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  • Posted April 12, 2013

    Check it out.

    Love the series. Grew up in this area of Wyoming. Places are recognizable in the fiction.

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  • Posted April 5, 2013

    Can't put it down---great read

    One of the best efforts from C J Box !!!

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