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A Night Too Dark (Kate Shugak Series #17)

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Overview

A Night Too Dark is New York Times bestselling writer Dana Stabenow’s latest, the seventeenth in a series chronicling life, death, love, tragedy, mischief, controversy, nature, and survival in Alaska, America’s last real frontier.

In Alaska, people disappear every day. In Aleut detective Kate Shugak’s Park, they’ve been disappearing a lot lately. Hikers head into the wilderness unprepared and get lost. Miners quit without notice at the busy ...

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A Night Too Dark (Kate Shugak Series #17)

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Overview

A Night Too Dark is New York Times bestselling writer Dana Stabenow’s latest, the seventeenth in a series chronicling life, death, love, tragedy, mischief, controversy, nature, and survival in Alaska, America’s last real frontier.

In Alaska, people disappear every day. In Aleut detective Kate Shugak’s Park, they’ve been disappearing a lot lately. Hikers head into the wilderness unprepared and get lost. Miners quit without notice at the busy Suulutaq Mine. Suicides leave farewell notes and vanish.

Not only are Park rats disappearing at an alarming rate, but so is life in the Park as Kate knows it. Alaska state trooper Jim Chopin’s workload has increased to where he doesn’t make it home three nights out of four, the controversial mine has seduced Johnny and his classmates with summer jobs and divided the Niniltna Native Association—the aunties are to a woman selling out—and a hostile environmental activist organization has embraced the Suulutaq Mine as their reason for being.

It’s almost a relief when Kate finds a body. This she can handle.

Until the identity of the body vanishes, too.

In this latest Kate Shugak novel, the smart, sexy PI, her wolf/husky hybrid Mutt, and Chopper Jim are only just beginning to realize the fallout from the discovery of the world’s second-largest gold mine in their backyard. “Mine change everything,” Auntie Vi said in Whisper to the Blood (the previous book in the series and the first to hit the New York Times bestseller list).

And it’s only just beginning.

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Editorial Reviews

Patrick Anderson
This plot unfolds nicely, but what makes the novel outstanding is Stabenow's vivid portrait of the Alaskan culture…Stabenow is blessed with a rich prose style and a fine eye for detail.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
Bestseller Stabenow deftly explores the environmental and economic impact of gold mining in her sizzling 17th novel to feature Alaska PI Kate Shugak (after 2009's Whisper to the Blood). Global Harvest Resources is intent on opening the Suulutaq Mine, where substantial deposits of gold, copper, and molybdenum have been found on state leases in the middle of the Iqaluk Wildlife Refuge, 50 miles from Niniltna. When Kate, “chair of the board of directors of the Niniltna Native Association,” and state trooper Jim Chopin find bear-eaten human remains near the truck of Global Harvest roustabout Dewayne A. Gammons, they assume the remains are Gammons's. After all, there was a suicide note in Gammons's truck. Weeks later, a wounded and nearly catatonic Gammons emerges from the woods near Kate's homestead. More puzzles—and murder—follow. An uneasy resolution to the crimes suggests further drama ahead for Kate and her fellow “Park rats.” Author tour. (Feb.)
Library Journal
As a controversial gold mine prepares to open in the Iqaluk Wildlife Refuge, an employee leaves a suicide note and disappears into the wilderness. When a search party finds bear-eaten human remains, the body is assumed to be the missing miner. Kate Shugak is at a loss when the man stumbles out of the woods some weeks later. Now she must identify the body. VERDICT Mixing the economic, political, and environmental impact of a gold mine on the beautiful Alaskan landscape with Kate's private life and her unacknowledged opposition to the mine makes the 17th Kate Shugak novel (after Whisper to the Blood) a page-turner. Readers of Stan Jones's Alaskan mysteries will appreciate Stabenow's portrayal of the state. [See Prepub Mystery, LJ 10/1/09; available as an audio CD.]
Kirkus Reviews
Think of gold, lots of gold. Global Harvest Resources Inc. has discovered 42 million ounces of everyone's favorite metal at the Suulutaq Mine, on state leases smack in the middle of Alaska's Iqaluk Wildlife Refuge. Eager to assay even more, mine superintendent Vern Truax brings in a staff of dozens who work for a week, then head for a week off in the nearest town-Niniltna, 100 miles away-to drink, flirt and buy souvenirs. A suicidally inclined few opt for an unarmed stroll in the park, courting "death by Alaska" (aka, getting mauled by a bear or moose). When bits of a body duly turn up, investigator Kate Shugak (Whisper in the Blood, 2008, etc.) heads for the mine to see if anyone is missing and learns that Dewayne Gammons has been a no-show for a week. Despite niggling doubts, Kate writes him off as a suicide. When Gammons drags himself into Kate's yard a month later, the cute Aleut has to reconsider. First, who was the bear's real meal? Second, why has Gammons' friend Lydia, another mine employee, also turned up dead? And third, how are the two fatalities connected to State Trooper Jim Chopin's search for a bigamist, or to an industrial spy serving three paymasters, each craving proprietary information concerning the Suulutaq Mine?Kate, still unhappily serving as the chair of the Niniltna Native Association, is even unhappier about cell phones, moneyed tourists and other encroaching changes to the Alaskan lifestyle, not to mention the greed that accelerates them.
From the Publisher
"Alaskan P.I. Kate Shugak is expertly portrayed by Marguerite Gavin...Listeners will enjoy the twists of the mystery as well as the presentation." —AudioFile

"Experienced stage and screen actress Marguerite Gavin narrates and does so wonderfully. She brings the novel and characters to life." —SoundCommentary.com

Praise for Whisper to the Blood

“Grade: A. Some of the greatest mystery writers enrich us with their wonderful sense of place. Stabenow is one of them: Alaska’s answer to Tony Hillerman, she brings us the sights and sounds that few visitors will ever know. . . . If you haven’t discovered Stabenow yet, start here—then go back to A Cold Day for Murder and enjoy the whole story.”

Rocky Mountain News

“Excellent . . . No one writes more vividly about the hardships and rewards of living in the unforgiving Alaskan wilderness and the hardy but frequently flawed characters who choose to call it home. This is a richly rewarding regional series that continues to grow in power as it grows in length.”

Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“There are now sixteen Kate Shugak novels in this excellent series set in backwoods Alaska, and rather than losing steam, Stabenow is building it. Whisper to the Blood is the best Shugak so far. . . . Stabenow is terrific at building a story and keeping the suspense tight and the story moving.”

The Globe and Mail

“One of the best . . . A dynamite combination of atmosphere, action, and character.”

Booklist (starred review)

Praise for A Deeper Sleep

“When I’m casting about for an antidote to the sugary female sleuths . . . Kate Shugak, the Aleut private investigator in Dana Stabenow’s Alaskan mysteries, invariably comes to mind.”

The New York Times

“Stabenow once again presents us with a cleverly conceived and crisply written thriller that provides a provocative glimpse of life as it is lived and justice as it is served on America’s last frontier.”

The San Diego Union-Tribune

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312559083
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 11/30/2010
  • Series: Kate Shugak Series , #17
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 220,043
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.70 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Dana Stabenow is the New York Times bestselling author of the Kate Shugak mysteries and the Liam Campbell mysteries, as well as a few science fiction and thriller novels. Her book A Cold Day for Murder won an Edgar Award in 1994. Stabenow was born in Anchorage, Alaska and raised on a 75-foot fish tender in the Gulf of Alaska. She has a B.A. in journalism and an M.F.A. in writing from the University of Alaska. She has worked as an egg counter and bookkeeper for a seafood company, and worked on the TransAlaska pipeline before becoming a full-time writer. She continues to live in Alaska.

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Read an Excerpt

Gold.

Number 79 on the periodic table, Au. From the Latin, aurum.

The most precious and prized of metals, used for currency beginning with the Egyptian pharaohs in 2,700 B.C. and down through the ages by all nations as the metal of choice in the manufacture of those coins of highest value, like the aureus, the solidus, the ducat, the guilder, the sovereign, the double eagle, the Krugerrand. A malleable and forgiving metal, an ounce of pure gold can be beaten into a sheet large enough to gild the roof of a small home, although it is denser than lead. It doesn’t corrode, which makes it perfect for jewelry, although in its pure state it is too soft to stand up to repeated use and so is alloyed with other metals—copper, silver, nickel, or palladium—so that a wedding ring will last through a golden anniversary.

Gold is tasteless, although in the 1500s a Dutchman invented a liqueur called Goldwasser in which he sprinkled gold . akes. Medieval chefs used gold to garnish sweets before sending them up to the high tables.

Gold is an excellent conductor of heat and electricity, and resistant to oxidation and corrosion, making it useful in electronics and dentistry. It was used to plate the copper disk of recorded greetings on board Voyager 1, a hundred astronomical units out and counting. It is included in speculative designs for solar sails for spaceships and solar collectors for space habitats. Scientists have built gold nanospheres to work with lasers on a cure for cancer.

Gold is rare. Of all the noble metals, only mercury is more infrequently found in the earth’s crust.

Mythological gold is as seductive as gold manifest. Midas asked Dionysus for the gift of turning everything to gold with his touch, only to discover a mixed blessing when gold food and drink proved to be indigestible. Jason’s .eece, Kidd’s trea sure, Pizarro’s El Dorado, Sutter’s Mill, Siwash George’s Rabbit Creek, Yamashita’s Buddha—in any reality, in any century gold enthralls, enchants, intoxicates, and is the downfall of many an otherwise sensible man and woman who succumb to its siren song.

Gold.

At last report, $940.48 per troy ounce on the world market. . . .

Excerpted from A Night Too Dark by Dana Stabenow.

Copyright © 2010 by Dana Stabenow.

Published in January 2010 by St. Martin's Press.

All rights reserved. This work is protected under copyright laws and reproduction

is strictly prohibited. Permission to reproduce the material in any manner or

medium must be secured from the Publisher.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 46 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 46 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 21, 2010

    A Night To Dark

    An excellent story, as are the rest of Ms, Stabenow. I became acquainted with two of her books while on visit to Alaska and now have about 15 of her books. Am trying to obtain ALL of her writings. Excellent

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    an entertaining whodunit

    The Park in Alaska is a place of beauty to private detective Native American Kate Shugak, but the pristine landscape she loves will change when the Suulutaq Mine opens operations. Global Harvest Resources, the parent company learned the mine contains gold and after months of careful sampling and they know they have found quite a strike.

    Already the firm is making changes that the inhabitants of the Park have to adapt to as people working the mine come to the town of Ninikltna. One of the newcomers leaves a note in his car stating he committed suicide. When the body of Dewayne Gammons is found, there is not enough left of him to make an identification. Kate has a hunch after two people from the mine disappeared at the sane time that the deceased is not Dewayne, but she has no idea who the victim is. As she seeks clues, a third person is killed, which makes Kate even more determined to find out what is going on at the mine.

    Even before the homicides, Kate feels sad because the mining operation will change the Park though she is resigned that it will happen as people she respects sold out to the mining interests, which was not easy for them to do but they felt they had to tale advantage of people with money to spend. Still her melancholy over the mine does not prevent her from investigating as only she can. Her latest Alaskan Shootout is an entertaining whodunit that also showcases a difficult complex issue of needed economic development vs. maintaining the beauty of nature.

    Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 11, 2014

    Sterling

    These characters have become family, dysfunctions and all. I always relish the present book and look forward to the next.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 7, 2014

    Sparklefur

    Goes to the closest stream, then catches some fish

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2013

    Good

    Good read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2013

    Great book!

    I love the series, and look forward to each new book. Love the story-line, the characters are vivid and real, and she portrays Alaska so clearly you feel like you are there. Great book! Wonderful series!

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  • Posted April 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    STABENOW'S SERIES KEEPS GETTING BETTER AND BETTER

    AudioFile magazine describes Marguerite Gavin's voice as "sonorous..., rich and full of emotion.... She easily delivers wry humor [and] moves smoothly from accent to accent without hesitation, recalling multiple characters perfectly." Quite right. Her narration of A NIGHT TOO DARK is low key yet compelling as she returns to deliver another Kate Shugak thriller. Booklist writes "Gavin does justice to the complex character of Kate and those who enter her sphere...." So apropos because it may well be the complexity of Kate's character that keeps readers/listeners coming back for more. As for those who "enter her sphere," well.....
    In this, Stabenow's 17th novel to bring us PI Kate Shugak, the characters who cross her path (in addition to the love of her life Trooper Jim Chopin and her beloved Mutt who is half wolf half husky) are all affected by the Suulutaq Mine and the recently discovered large deposits of gold. The economic impact of this find is a bit more than Kate can relate to but finding a pickup with a suicide note in it but no driver is definitely up her alley. The sudden appearance of the supposed recently deceased complicates matters a bit, but leave it to Kate.
    Along the way environmental questions re the gold mine are raised, and we are treated to sharp portraits of that sometimes incomprehensible state Alaska. Stabenow and her series just get better and better with time - would that all of us would age as well.
    Enjoy!
    - Gail Cooke

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