Blue Wolf in Green Fire (Woods Cop Series #2)

Blue Wolf in Green Fire (Woods Cop Series #2)

5.0 5
by Joseph Heywood
     
 

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Upper Michigan Conservation Officer Grady Service has a case on his hands that doesn't make sense. A series of protests and bombs planted by a group of animal-rights activists appears to have culminated in a double murder at a wolf lab, which releases into the wild an extraordinarily rare animal: a blue wolf. To the Ojibwa a blue wolf represents good luck, unless it… See more details below

Overview

Upper Michigan Conservation Officer Grady Service has a case on his hands that doesn't make sense. A series of protests and bombs planted by a group of animal-rights activists appears to have culminated in a double murder at a wolf lab, which releases into the wild an extraordinarily rare animal: a blue wolf. To the Ojibwa a blue wolf represents good luck, unless it is captured or killed, and then it is an omen of Armageddon. Service suspects that the murders aren't what they seem to be when the FBI takes over the investigation and reaches far beyond its jurisdiction. Meanwhile, an elusive poaching ring that has been systematically killing trophy deer set its sights on wolves, of which there is a growing wild population in the Upper Peninsula. Once again, Service must defend his hallowed Mosquito Wilderness in a race against time when it becomes clear that the poachers' final target is the blue wolf. The novel's brilliant finale will cement Heywood's reputation as one of today's great mystery writers, and the Wood Cops series as the most exciting to come along in years. Full of outrageous, unforgettable characters and steeped in the lives of the Woods Cops, Blue Wolf in Green Fire is also a masterpiece of suspense. It's a fully satisfying journey into the natural world and beyond, into the terrifying extremes of human nature. (6 x 9 1/4, 352 pages) Joseph Heywood is the author of The Berkut, Taxi Dancer, The Domino Conspiracy, The Snowfly, and Ice Hunter. He lives and writes in Portage, Michigan, and frequents the wilds of the Upper Peninsula.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Compelling ideas and taut suspense distinguish the second in Heywood's series featuring DNR Conservation Officer Grady Service (after 2001's Ice Hunter). Set in the Mosquito Wilderness Tract of Michigan, it's a tense and harrowing narrative most of the way, spoiled only occasionally by the author's tendency to lecture ( la John D. MacDonald) and a predilection for eyebrow-raising names (Wink Rector, DaWayne Kota, Yank Kranker). When protests and bombs planted by animal rights activists apparently result in a double murder at a wolf lab, a rare blue wolf, the symbol for luck, escapes into the wild. But the wolf represents more to the Ojibwa tribe: the animal is an omen for Armageddon if it's captured or killed. Service suspects the murders are more than they seem, and it's up to him to solve them and defuse the potentially explosive situation. Meanwhile, a poaching ring sets its sights on the blue wolf, and Service is up to his badge in trouble. Heywood is best on topical details, if at a price-an overlay of ecological and sociological detail threatens to overwhelm the mystery. No matter. When the action takes over, Heywood is incomparable: "In the waning light he was about to resign himself to another cold night, but movement to his right caught his attention. He froze, moving only his eyes, and saw a cedar limb shudder slightly, spilling snow. Below it protruded the barrel of the fifty-caliber rifle pointed toward him. The bore looked big enough to shoot a round the size of a walnut." One hopes Heywood has a long writing career ahead of him. (Sept.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Formerly responsible for the Mosquito Wilderness in upper Michigan as an employee of the Department of Natural Resources, Grady Service has been promoted to detective. He and his co-workers struggle to neutralize a well-organized poaching ring that preys on large-antlered deer, gall bladder-owning bears, and ultimately, a rare, omen-carrying blue wolf. The murder of a jailed poacher gives Service a break, but further killings and mayhem challenge his abilities-and his relationship with his ambitious lover and her vindictive kinsman, the state's governor. A gripping plot, replete with memorable surrounds and spiky characters, makes this second in the series (after Ice Hunter) an excellent choice for most collections. A good pick also for readers who enjoy outdoor mysteries by such authors as Nevada Barr or Dana Stabenow.
Kirkus Reviews
Conservation Officer Grady Service, who patrols the vast, imaginary Mosquito Tract in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, is a man made "to live big and hard," which is why he loves his job so much-the breathtaking beauty of his surroundings, the paradoxical savagery of the animals and weather, and, of course, the irresistible pull of danger. What he doesn't love are poachers, particularly when their target of choice amounts to an endangered species, and their weapon of choice is anything but sporting. It's been a long time, for instance, since wolves made a habitat out of the Mosquito Tract, and Grady bristles at the thought of them as prey for fat-cat trophy-hunters wielding 50-caliber rifles. And if wolves are generally rare in the Mosquito Tract, a blue wolf qualifies as a kind of miracle, though one that's merely a come-on to the trigger-happy. Poachers and trophy hunters, however, are small potatoes compared to the miscreants who blew up a federal animal lab. At first, zealots belonging to the Animal Freedom League seem the obvious suspects-until Grady begins viewing the explosion as a cold-blooded experiment in make-believe. The two human corpses inside may not have been collateral damage at all, he decides, but rather the intended result of an elaborate and deadly cover-up. Before Grady can get to the bottom of the convoluted goings-on, he'll be in the sights of a 50-caliber rifle himself. A bit plot-heavy, perhaps, but our stalwart hero and his sexy girlfriend make a couple most readers will enjoy trekking with.
From the Publisher
"A gripping plot, replete with memorable surrounds and spiky characters, makes this second in the series (after Ice Hunter) an excellent choice for most collections. A good pick also for readers who enjoy outdoor mysteries by such authors as Nevada Barr or Dana Stabenow."—Library Journal"This second Woods Cop procedural is well written, suspenseful, and bleakly humorous while moving as quickly as a wolf cutting through winter woods. In addition to strong characters and a compelling romance, Heywood provides vivid, detailed descriptions of the wilderness and the various procedures and techniques of conservation officers and poachers. The tricky, evasive behavior of federal officials recalls the atmosphere of The X-Files, while the police procedure and banter evoke K.C. Constantine’s Mario Balzic series. Highly recommended."—Booklist"Compelling ideas and taut suspense distinguish the second in Heywood's series...When the action takes over, Heywood is incomparable. One hopes Heywood has a long writing career ahead of him."—Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781585745876
Publisher:
Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
09/28/2002
Series:
Woods Cop Series, #2
Edition description:
First
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.36(h) x 1.13(d)

Read an Excerpt

Excerpt:Talking to Tree always made him feel better, but it didn't seem to change the fact that he was in a screwy situation—and this business with SuRo seemed ludicrous. He hoped she wouldn't try to chuck him out when he began asking questions. Seeing her was a waste of time, his gut told him. He had too many other questions he'd rather pursue. What was the exact security setup at Vermillion, and if there were tapes and the feds had them, when were they going to share? And what exactly was a blue wolf? For that he would have to drive all the way to Crystal Falls and see Yogi Zambonet, the biologist who headed the state's wolf recovery program. Yogi had been born in Chassell, had gotten his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota, and worked in Alaska and Idaho before returning home to Michigan, where he had developed into one of the most respected wolf biologists in the country.Within the DNR Yogi was affectionately called Wolf Daddy. A tall gaunt man with a shaggy beard and long hair tied in a ponytail, the biologist tended to spend a lot of time alone in the field observing and tracking his animals, and catching up to him might prove difficult. Service radioed the district office in Crystal Falls, asked for the biologist, and was told he was not due in until the next morning. Service left a message that he needed to see him. He left his number for a call-back, and tried to shift his thoughts to Pidge Carmody and poachers.But he was in no mood to think about work. Just outside St. Ignace he called Nantz's hotel and was put through to her room. "I'm sorry I had to bail out so fast, honey," he said."I'm glad you called, Grady. I've been worried. What happened at Vermillion?""There was an explosion," he said."But people were killed. Is this related to the stuff at Tech? ""We don't know," he said. "You should see the vultures gathering: feds, state, county, everybody seems to be looking for a piece of the action."

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