Monday, October 5, 2015

A Reader's Opinion: THE BONE ORCHARD by Paul Doiron



The Book
"The Bone Orchard [is] both a rich exploration of character and a satisfying mystery." --Bruce DeSilva, Associated Press"Excellent . . . Thoughtful plotting and strong characters raise this above the crime novel pack." —Publishers weekly


In the aftermath of a family tragedy, Mike Bowditch has left the Maine Warden Service and is working as a fishing guide in the North Woods. But when his mentor Sgt. Kathy Frost is forced to kill a troubled war veteran in an apparent case of "suicide by cop," he begins having second thoughts about his decision. 

Now Kathy finds herself the target of a government inquiry and outrage from the dead soldier's platoon mates. Soon she finds herself in the sights of a sniper, as well. When the sergeant is shot outside her farmhouse, Mike joins the hunt to find the mysterious man responsible. To do so, the ex-warden must plunge into his friend's secret past--even as a beautiful woman from Mike's own past returns, throwing into jeopardy his tentative romance with wildlife biologist Stacey Stevens. 

As Kathy Frost lies on the brink of death and a dangerous shooter stalks the blueberry barrens of central Maine, Bowditch is forced to confront the choices he has made and determine, once and for all, the kind of man he truly is, in The Bone Orchard by Paul Doiron.


A Reader's Opinion
Although this is the fifth in the Mike Bowditch series, this was the first for me. It didn't matter, at all that I hadn't read the others.

Bowditch is just getting used to a change of career. He used to be a police officer for the Maine Warden Service, but now he's enjoying a slower pace of life as a nature & fishing guide for the many visitors to the beautiful state of Maine. The first part of the book is taken up by telling the reader a lot about his new way of life, and to be honest I was getting a little bored reading about birds, fish, survival and the amazing landscapes. I wanted the action to start. Then, BAM!!: it was like reading a different, much better, book.

Mikes old boss from the Maine Warden Service, and good friend, Kathy Frost is in trouble. She shot and killed a man in the line of duty. The trouble is the guy she shot was a wounded war veteran from Afghanistan. It was clearly a case of suicide by cop, but his, well connected, family, friends and every vet in the country don't want to believe that. They're looking for someone to blame, and Kathy is being threatened.

Mike feels bad for his old boss, and when she won't answer his calls he decides to go visit. Kathy really isn't in the mood for visitors and tells Mike, in no uncertain terms, to go away and leave her the hell alone. It's a good job she calls to apologise just a few minutes later, because Mike overhears something that makes him drive straight back.

He finds Kathy in a pool of blood, barely clinging onto life, and the son of a bitch who shot her is still on her land, trying to finish the job.

All of Mike's old colleagues from the Warden Service converge either at the scene, or at the hospital, but he's not one of them anymore, and it shows.

Is Mike Bowditch the kind of guy to just sit back and wait, and hope that the guy that did this will get caught—NO. He's going to do whatever it takes to find him and earn back the respect from his old friends at the Warden Service.

I really enjoyed this book; the only criticism is that I was 30% into the book before anything really happened, and strangely, any word with a V in it seemed to create a typo. Minor, I know, but irritating all the same. I would give this four stars out of five, and would definitely like to read more by the author.

Reviewed by Yolanda 
Book received via NetGalley 
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Reviews are entirely the opinion of the individual reviewer and may not necessarily reflect the opinions of this blog or MK.

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