Monday, August 22, 2016

45. Wolf Lake: a novel by John Verdon

#5 Dave Gurney, upstate New York detective
listened on Audible
2016, Counterpoint
375 pgs.
Adult Murder Mystery
Finished 8/22/16
Goodreads rating:  3.92 - 562 ratings
My rating:  4
Setting: Contemporary Adirondacks resort during a blizzard

First line/s:  "The porcupine's behavior was making no sense.  There was something deeply disturbing about its lack of logical purpose - disturbing at last to Dave Guerney."

My comments:  Number five in the Dave Guerney series did not disappoint, but I don't think any will affect me like the first, which I thought was absolutely brilliant. Intricate mystery solver, decorated ex-NY state police detective now-retired, takes on the mystery of why four people could commit suicide in the exact same manner after having the exact same frightening dream.  The cast of characters is not really large, so solving the mystery isn't hugely difficult if the reader's paying close attention.  Good story, I gobbled it up in two long sittings.  The reader (I listened to this one) was excellent. The setting is during a blizzard in the Adirondacks, which I'm happy to read about as long as I'm not enduring the actuality. A great part of this particular novel is about Gurney's wife, Madeline, who I've never really felt drawn to (I don't really understand their relationship at all, or her weird, silent attitude towards her husband and anything he does that she doesn't agree with).  However, she's drawn me in - a tiny bit more - in this story.  Now I have to wait another year for then next sequel!

Goodreads synopsis:  Could a nightmare be used as a murder weapon? That’s the provocative question confronting Gurney in the thrilling new installment in this series of international bestsellers. The former NYPD star homicide detective is called upon to solve a baffling puzzle: Four people who live in different parts of the country and who seem to have little in common, report having had the same dream—a terrifying nightmare involving a bloody dagger with a carved wolf’s head on the handle. All four are subsequently found with their wrists cut — apparent suicides — and the weapon used in each case was a wolf’s head dagger.
       Police zero in quickly on Richard Hammond, a controversial psychologist who conducts hypnotherapy sessions at a spooky old Adirondack inn called Wolf Lake Lodge. It seems that each of the victims had gone there to meet with Hammond shortly before turning up dead. 
       Troubled by odd holes in the official approach to the case, Gurney begins his own investigation — an action that puts him in the crosshairs of not only an icy murderer and the local police but the darkest corner of the federal government. As ruthless as the blizzard trapping him in the sinister eeriness of Wolf Lake, Gurney’s enemies set out to keep him from the truth at any cost — including an all-out assault on the sanity of his beloved wife Madeleine.
       With his emotional resources strained to the breaking point, Gurney must throw himself into a deadly battle of wits with the most frightening opponent he has ever faced.
       Wolf Lake is the page-turning new work by a writer hailed by the New York Times as “masterly” — and it furthers the adventures of Dave Gurney, a detective reviewers have compared to Sherlock Holmes.

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