North of Nowhere (Alex McKnight Series #4)

North of Nowhere (Alex McKnight Series #4)

4.0 23
by Steve Hamilton

View All Available Formats & Editions

Summer has finally arrived in Paradise, Michigan, but Alex McKnight doesn't seem to notice the change in the weather. He's been retreating into own his private world the past few months and now he barely leaves his cabin except to go have his meals in the nearby Glasgow Inn. The Inn's proprietor, Jackie, is more and more concerned with Alex's state, and the last…  See more details below


Summer has finally arrived in Paradise, Michigan, but Alex McKnight doesn't seem to notice the change in the weather. He's been retreating into own his private world the past few months and now he barely leaves his cabin except to go have his meals in the nearby Glasgow Inn. The Inn's proprietor, Jackie, is more and more concerned with Alex's state, and the last straw comes as he watches Alex morosely counting up his "failures" on the eve of his 49th birthday— his marriage, his baseball career, his stint in the Detroit police. He offers his friend an ultimatum: "Either I take you to the airport and put your ass on a plane to Moosehide or you play poker with me tonight."

The other poker players are men Alex hardly knows, in a posh house near the water. In the middle of the game, masked robbers invade the premises, hold the players at gunpoint and proceed to rob the homeowner. Alex is roused to action and so is his former detective partner, Leon Prudell. Working first against one another and later together, they discover that the crime is far more complex than a simple robbery. There is murder and greed and revenge involved, and a wild chase on the waters of Lake Superior before Alex is forced to realize that there is no retreat from life. And that maybe this is a good thing.

Author Biography: Steve Hamilton was born and raised in the Detroit area. He now lives in upstate New York with his wife and children. His first novel, A Cold Day In Paradise won the 1997 SMP/ PWA Award for Best First Private Eye Novel, the 1999 Edgar Award, and the Shamus Award.

Read More

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
No longer a cop, inactive as a private eye, classic loner Alex McKnight has retreated to his lakeside cabin in this superb yarn, Edgar-winner Hamilton's fourth after 2001's The Hunting Wind. In fact, Alex has become so much a recluse in the little town of Paradise in Michigan's Upper Peninsula that his few friends are worried about him. That leads Jackie Connery, the Scottish-raised proprietor of the bar where Alex sometimes hangs out, to badger him into joining a friendly power game at the home of Win Vargas. Before Alex can even work up a good dislike of the blustery, wealth-flaunting Vargas, three armed men interrupt the poker game. While Alex, Jackie and the other players are held at gunpoint, their host is led off to open a safe and his treasured collection of artifacts in trashed or stolen. From that quick beginning, events move swiftly and strangely. Alex finds Vargas's suspicions centering on him; the police, let my old enemy Chief Roy Maven, think Jack and the other players were in on the robbery. And Alex's ex-partner, PI Leon Prudell, turns out to have yet another take on who's behind the robbery. Hamilton keeps the action fast and furious and manages to keep the read off balance almost as much as his hero. As usual, Alex takes more than his share of lumps as he rediscovers the importance of friendship, loyalty and courage. While Alex McKnight would probably hate the idea, mysteries this good may make him extremely popular. Agent, Jane Chelius. (May 13) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Alex McKnight owns a small group of rustic cottages on the north edge of Michigan near Lake Superior. His retreat from society is interrupted by well-meaning friend Jackie, who forces him out of his hideaway for an evening of poker. When the game is interrupted by a well-planned burglary and Jackie is arrested for it, Alex is determined to clear him. The tangle proves more complex and dangerous than Alex had expected, but he stubbornly looks for answers. Nick Sullivan has narrated all four of Hamilton's mysteries featuring Alex, and he is clearly in sync with the material. He reads with an intensity that portrays Alex's single-minded concentration on whatever task confronts him, yet he can slow his pace to allow the listener to enjoy the wry humor laced throughout much of the story. Sullivan's deep voice is suited to the hard-boiled detective genre; his interpretation of the disillusioned ex-cop and his colorful acquaintances includes gruff voices; Midwestern, Canadian and Scottish accents; and attentive pacing. Recommended for mystery collections.-Juleigh Muirhead Clark, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Lib., Colonial Williamsburg Fdn., VA Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Though all Michigan's Upper Peninsula is basking in rare balmy sunlight, it's the summer of Alex McKnight's discontent. Now that he's about to turn 50 without much to show for his half-century, the ex–minor-league catcher, ex-cop, ex–private cop, ex-husband, and current owner of six unprepossessing hunting and fishing cabins has turned hermit. And that worries his best friend Jackie Connery, proprietor of the Glasgow Inn, where Alex has not been dropping in for his customary tipple. Invading Alex's lair, Jackie all but kidnaps him for a friendly poker game at fat cat Win Vargas's swanky home. It turns out, however, that there's a lot more in the cards for all concerned than straights, flushes, and male bonding. Three gun-toting hard guys crash the party and break open the bedroom safe, departing with $700,000 of Vargas's money. A bad night is followed by a nightmarish day when Jackie and two other players, all Alex's close friends, are arrested by lunkheaded Chief of Police Roy Maven. The robbery was a conspiracy, the chief asserts; Alex's pals were in on it; and stuff stolen from Vargas has turned up in possession of all three. Certain his friends have been framed, Alex goes into overdrive trying to keep them out of jail. But then slowly, unsettlingly, he realizes that there's a definite hangdog look about them he doesn't associate with innocent men. Hamilton (The Hunting Wind, 2001, etc.) spins a brisk, well-plotted tale brightened by his usual deft way with local color.
A bracing, sometimes sidesplitting...novel.
Columbia State
Hamilton packs plenty of hardscrabble characters and pithy dialogue into a nifty mystery...there's nothing like a bit of Paradise-Michigan, that is.
Flint Journal
North of Nowhere has a twisty plot with genuine surprises, but it's the understanding of the people who live in the Upper Peninsula and the love for both the harshness and beauty of the Lake Superior shoreline that make this another good entry in a terrific series.
A fast-paced book with wonderful characters...Hamilton writes great prose.
Internet Bookwatch
A robust entry...Alex is at his best and the support cast augments the isolated feeling of going north of nowhere that shows why Steve Hamilton is an award-winning author.

Read More

Product Details

Brilliance Audio
Publication date:
Alex McKnight Series, #4
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 6.50(h) x 0.70(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

North of Nowhere (Alex McKnight Series #4) 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
smoochys More than 1 year ago
The story starts the way all of the McKnight books do....he's reluctantly pulled into doing something he doesn't want to do. The story is told very cleverly and the ending is a total surprise. This is a worthy read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
A reader can always count on vivid descriptions of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Lake Superior, the weather, and similar environmental factors. To some degree, these all play a role in this tale. However, human greed and stupidity are the major components of the plot, which begins with Alex McKnight suffering from an apparent fit of depression. (It should perhaps be noted that this novel was written over a decade ago, now available for the first time in paperback.) His friend, Jackie Connery, who runs the Glasgow Inn, Alex’s usual hangout. drags him out of his cabin to fill in a slot in a poker game, which is soon invaded by three masked men who rob the host’s safe and destroy a collection of artifacts. From this beginning, Alex becomes more and more involved in discovering the reason for the home invasion and with the help of his ex-partner (he still insists he is no longer a PI despite the fact that he continues his predilection for investigating every little thing) seeks to solve the mystery. Written with Steve Hamilton’s accustomed smoothness, the novel moves forward with the usual complications. As it progresses, the reader is kept off balance, and the conclusion is most unexpected. Recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MexicoDan More than 1 year ago
One of the best in the Alex McKnight series.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
corvettemary More than 1 year ago
The Alex McKnight series is awesome. Great stories!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ThewordfromHerd More than 1 year ago
I am always looking to find a replacement for my beloved John McDonald who wrote among his numerous novels, the Travis McGee "color" mystery's. He wrote the "Long Lavender Look", "Pale Gray for Guilt","Free Fall in Crimson", and so many more, 21 in all before he passed away in 1986. I truly enjoy Sue Grafton and her female detective, Kinsey Milhone, but I haven't quite found that substitute for the quirky but always thinking beach bum, Travis McGee. In Steve Hamilton's Alex McKnight we have the retired cop, from bullet wounds (with one still inside) and mental scars from the traumatic way he and his partner were taken down, but who is still strong enough to smell out trouble and work out a break down the walls approach to a solution. Sometimes it gets real messy, but hang in there it's coming. It's never slow and I became so involved in the second novel with all the moving around the area that I "Mapquested" it so I could see the lay of the land. Now I want to go there sometime and get the feel of this very "outback" country in the North of America. It has the perfect settings for the exact elements he is looking for as a writer. There are weather extremes, remote locations, a kind of backwoods law of the jungle,and enough connections to fill the six degrees of separation requirement plausibly. For me it is "grabber" reading. Once I'm in the first chapter, I'm hooked and look forward to spending the next couple of hours devouring his every word. If you like Travis McGee, I think you'll like Alex McKnight, another outstanding "Mac" detective for mystery lovers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I must say the book has its moments. Action sequences are highlights. However, some of the dialog seems forced and hard to believe. My namesake character is still one of the best in Noveldome.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dew: She leaps over her sister, then scratched (with claws sheathed) her sisters back "That was the best one" She meowed panting. Lynx: "I agree" she meowed