Customer Reviews for

Starvation Lake (Starvation Lake Series #1)

Average Rating 4
( 91 )
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(40)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

10 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

"Starvation Lake" is an excellent and unusual first novel!

I heard an interview with this Writer, Bryan Gruley, on WGN radio in Chicago. After the interview, I had to buy the book. It sounded really interesting. After I read the book, I was glad I did. I usually can't remember titles if I don't write them down, but this titl...
I heard an interview with this Writer, Bryan Gruley, on WGN radio in Chicago. After the interview, I had to buy the book. It sounded really interesting. After I read the book, I was glad I did. I usually can't remember titles if I don't write them down, but this title was very memorable: "Starvation Lake". It is a great mystery set in resort town in Michigan. What is it about? Hockey and Murder. If you're not a hockey fan you might not understand the difference, but this is a book filled with great characters who live in a small town on a lake in Michigan. The main character is a disgraced reporter who almost made it big by breaking a big story and winning a Pulitzer . . . but instead he returns home to Starvation Lake to run the local newspaper. It is a typical small town newspaper and his staff consists three people. The town is dying because he made a mistake as a teenager, and the stuggle to save the town is filled with dirty small town deals behind closed doors between men who never let their highschool problems die.

So where does hockey come into this story? As a teenager, the reporter was the goalie for the town's high school hockey team. Starvation Lake was put on the map by a legendary coach and a small band of players who captured the attention of the entire state of Michigan by making it into the state championship hockey game only to lose it in overtime on a bad play by the reporter/goalie. The entire town never forgave him, and after the loss the town went into a state of decline. No one is surprised that he lost his big city reporter job and had to come home with his tail between his legs. All the men in the town play in a hockey league, and their off ice struggles to save the town frequently boil over into violence in the hockey rink.

The author makes you care about these unlikely likeable characters. This book is funny and insightful, and the mystery is first class. You don't have to like hoceky to like this book. It paints a very vivid picture of working class people from Michigan who love the outdoors and the natural beauty of their state. Their values are very blue collar and honest. Their stuggles to make ends meet are real especially in this economy. Their crimes also fit the times, and the mystery is very complex. The author reveals the answers to clues in unexpected ways. He stayed a step ahead of me right to the very end.

This book might not appeal to everyone because it is blue collar and hockey is not for everyone. But try reading a few pages of it and see if it catches your interest. The characters are very likeable and the mystery is a good one. I passed it on to my wife, and she is still reading. When I asked here what she thought, she said the mystery has her hooked. I truly hope this author writes another novel soon because this was a fun read and an amazing first novel. I especially liked all the characters, and I hope I can visit them in Starvation Lake again in another book by Bryan Gruley.

posted by actorsaudio on October 7, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Michigan hockey special

If you love Michigan and/or hockey you will like this book. I learned a lot about the psychology of hockey. Good escape reading - especially during Stanley Cup time.

posted by martykins on July 5, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2014

    Not my way of talking!

    I started reading the sample and stopped because of the bad taste in language. Anonymous

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2014

    ???

    ???clan attacks and steels prey

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 6, 2014

    Harriet klausner

    Of course harriet klausner has to come along with all the other plot spoiler and ruin the book with her cliff note book report. Please bn, ban harriet klausner and delete her plot spoiling posts. It is by her actions that other plot spoilers think they can get away with ruining books by revealing the entire storyline.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 11, 2014

    Scorchfang

    You can come with me. Im going to join Rainclan. I useed to be the clan leader. I hope you dont mind.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2011

    Lots of foul language

    Not a good book for young people.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Incomplete Rambling Suspenseless Trash

    This author has no clue what goes on in a courtroom or a products liability lawsuit and his dumber than dumb subplot is not only implausible, it is never completed. The protagonist/narrator is a newspaper reporter who claims that his stories, emanating from an truckmaker's voicemails that he surreptitiously obtained, were cited in the trial of a gas tank explosion personal injury trial that resulted in a huge multi million dollar punitive award to the family of the young man who burned to death in a two-car accident. Sure...juries decided cases based on newspaper hearsay articles rather than admissible evidence every day. Does this author really think fiction readers are that stupid? Then, well after the verdict, the truck manufacturer figures out that the the reporter, with the aid of a whistleblower, hacked into their voicemails and threaten the newspaper with theft lawsuits. The newspaper caves in to the threats even though the stories were accurate so they publish an apology saying the stories were false. Yeah, that happens every day. It gets even dumber. The manufacturer then uses the apology to appeal the verdict and the family agrees to settle the case for significantly less than the award with all of the money going to make sure similar accidents never happen again. Are you laughing out loud yet? But before they will pay and withdraw the appeal, the manufacturer wants the reporter to give up the identity of whistleblower source. If he doesn't they will file criminal complaints against him for the hackjob. That leads to State police looking for and chasing the reporter from Michigan to Virginia and back like he is a serial killer on the loose. But this manhunt is about hacked emails? Wow, isn't that exciting real life drama? And lawyers involved in a completely different case against the manufacturer threaten to file papers objecting to any settlement because the legal fee is too small. And how would they have standing to do that? This author does not care. Then suddenly the subplot that runs through the whole book just up and disappears because a local judge signs some unexplained papers that make it difficult for the State police to effectuate the reporter's arrest, so after all these prosecution threats and the manhunt, the truck manufacturer just gives up and walks away. As for the main plot, which ...just a lot of junk about ex-hockey players and coaches hiding a secret, that once revealed, brings absolutely nothing new or orginal. There isn't a lick of suspense in this book. Now why would you need suspense or thrills in a mystery, which is what this author must have thought? You even have a prologue that is never revisited and just left to die in its own. I have no idea how this ever got published, but this is no feather in the caps of the author, his agent, the editors and the publishing company. Just a disaster with too much almost unreadably boring ice hockey game narrative that why nobody watches that sport on television.

    0 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 11, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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