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Winter of the Wolf Moon: An Alex McKnight Mystery [Mass Market Paperback]

Steve Hamilton
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feb. 15 2001 Alex McKnight Novels (Book 2)
Ex-cop and sometime-P.I. Alex McKnight endures the bitter winter of Michigan's Upper Peninsula in his log cabin with warm fires and cold Molsons. When Dorothy Parrish, a young Ojibwa woman asks him for shelter from her violent boyfriend, McKnight agrees. But after secreting her in one of his cabins, he finds her gone the next morning. McKnight suspects vicious, hockey-playing Lonnie Bruckman of abducting the woman, but his search for her brings on more suspects, bruising encounters, and a thinkening web of crime, all obscured by the relentless whiplash of brutal snowstorms. From the secret world of the Ojibwa reservation to the Canadian border and deep into the silent woods, someone is out to kill--and McKnight is driving right into the line of fire...

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

It's just another lovely day in Paradise... for those who love zero-degree weather and frozen pipes. This Paradise is a town on Michigan's Upper Peninsula, where Hamilton catches up with reluctant gumshoe Alex McKnight after his debut in A Cold Day in Paradise. The frigid season finds Alex focused on snowplowing, maintaining the cabins he rents to snowmobilers and whiling away evenings at the Glasgow Inn with a few cold Canadians. After years as a cop and PI, Alex is ready to settle down to undisturbed country life. But as any good mystery writer knows (and Hamilton, who won the 1999 Edgar for Best First Novel, is no exception), that's not in the cards. One night, a young Native American, Dorothy Parrish, whose troubles are unclear but obviously serious, approaches Alex, then disappears. Her sudden disappearance has Alex presuming she's dead, and there's evidence that she was involved with ill-tempered, drug-crazed hockey player Lonnie Bruckman. Ignoring his initial trepidation to reenter the crime world, Alex vows to find Dorothy and her kidnapper--or killer. Bruckman is definitely involved, and Alex, with the help of his "partner," Leon Prudell, identifies multiple suspects. Bruckman's hockey buddies are threatening, but it soon becomes apparent that there's a more powerful force behind them. This is a most entertaining tale, peppered with wry humor and real, amusing characters. Hamilton presents a fast mystery brimming with insight into both the politics of U.S./Canadian border crimes and the relations between Native Americans and their white neighbors. (Feb.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

After subbing in an amateur ice hockey game for some Indian friends, sometime private investigator Alex McKnight antagonizes an in-your-face opponent known for racist remarks, drug dealing, and girlfriend abuse. Alex helps the girlfriend, who promptly disappears (along with an important parcel), then rescues good buddy Vinnie (an Ojibway Indian) from jail--where he landed after attacking the hockey player. Alex, Vinnie, and a would-be detective/partner search for the woman, sidestepping murder, vicious assault, and more. The isolated, wintry location jives well with Hamilton's pristine prose, independent protagonist, and ingenious plot. An inviting sequel to his Edgar Award-winning first novel, A Cold Day in Paradise.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile Read April 7 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is my first Steve Hamilton book and as an author I enjoyed his often unhero like hero Alex McKnight. Hamilton's word artistry had me cringing at the pain one man can inflict on another and at his apt discription of a cold snow-encrusted winter. I plan to share "Winter of the Wolf Moon" with all of my reading buddies and I look forward to purchasing another Hamilton novel.
Beverly J Scott author of RIGHTEOUS REVENGE and RUTH FEVER
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good Aug. 11 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Steve Hamilton continues his strong writing with this sequel to his Edgar Award winning-novel, A COLD DAY IN PARADISE. The author brings back Alex McKnight and the small town of Paradise located in Michigan's northern peninsula. McKnight is a former cop who retired after being injured on the job. He tried his luck as a private detective but after the incidents in the previous novel he just wants to put himself together and enjoy his life. Everything changes with a hockey game.
Vinnie LeBlanc, a friend of McKnight, drafts him as a goalie for an over-thirty hockey league. It is shortly thereafter that he meets Lonnie Bruckman, a player from the opposing team, who is physically abusive and stoned in drugs. They get involved in several altercations leaving neither of them in good condition. One night he meets Bruckman's girlfriend, Dorothy Parrish. She wants to hire McKnight in trying to get away from the abusive relationship and start a new life. He agrees to let her spend the night in one of the cabins he rents and to discuss it in the morning. The next morning she disappears.
When he confronts Bruckman he finds out that he did not kidnap his girlfriend. He is also searching for her because she took something that was not hers and he wants him back. Alex gets into it very deep when he learns that Bruckman is not a threat but someone else.
Hamilton knows how to write an entertaining story and he does a decent job here. There are certain parts in the book that did not make sense such as McKnight's involvement with the case. He could have let the cops do their job but instead he gets personally involved. The supporting characters are strong and interesting. A COLD DAY IN PARADISE is one of the best novels from a few years ago. This next work comes close but not quite.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't Get Any Better Than This March 22 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
When you find a writer as good as Steve Hamilton, you wish they'd write faster so there'd be more and more of their books to read. Winter of the Wolf Moon is another terrific outing for Alex McKnight. Having started with his most recent book, I had to buy the previous ones (and I've got the new one on order) and I've discovered that this is an author who hit the ground running and never lets up. Alex is a character with warmth, integrity and gently self-mocking humor. He is so well-realized that his every move and thought is completely valid, as is the behavior of all the other characters in this book--including the weather, which has a personality all its own. The miserable cold, the ever-accumulating snow are vital to the plot twists; and the ending is completely unpredictable. Never does the author inflict himself on the material, but rather allows the characters to speak, to live and breathe for themselves. This is a can't-put-it-down tale, too soon ended, splendidly done.
Most highly recommended.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Night of the Winter Snooze? Dec 8 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Okay; I've read some of the other reviews so guess it is just me. I think Hamilton writes very well, but I didn't find a gripping plot. He makes a great travelogue writer, describing the UP (Upper Pennisula) so you can feel your fingers freezing and the snow up to your hips....but, I need a little more in my mysteries. Some real suspense would have been a nice touch. I wasn't really worried about the kidnapped Dorothy; I wasn't introduced to her very long and didn't know if she deserved her fate, or was an innocent victim (poor kid!!) I always prefer my protagonist to display some skills, whereas Alex doesn't seem to have any skills in current working order except for his snowplow expertise and his feeling of failure as a cop and investigator. Also, I didn't read his first book, but the fact that our hero was so grossed out by the sight of blood and dead bodies doesn't seem to track with his profession as a former cop. But I am obviously in the minority so I will leave you all to enjoy his future efforts while I pass and keep looking for new authors I enjoy.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Zero at the Bone March 29 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Alex McKnight's second outing is a little more light-hearted than his first. He is still an accident waiting to happen, but he's getting a grip. The action again takes place during winter in Michigan's Upper Peninsula right on Lake Superior. The author can and does give us a whole new definition of cold.
The story line is a stretch at times, and some things are never satisfactorily explained. It is more than surreal to meet a cultivated Russian gentleman in an ice shack in the wilds of upper Michigan. We are never told how and why he is there. Mr. Hamilton is a very good writer and paces the story well. There are no "dead" spots where nothing happens and the story stagnates. The reader's interest is engaged at all times with the interesting characters, Alex's actions and reactions, and the descriptive passages. What I needed is a more coherent plot that doesn't fall flat at the end.
I'm looking forward to Steve Hamilton's future efforts. He is too good a writer to disappoint us.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good one!
Again, this writer continues to remind me of William Tapply (in a good way!) And again, like the first book in the series, we are left slightly hanging at the end, without the real... Read more
Published on March 2 2003 by montymom
5.0 out of 5 stars Intelligent writing...great whodunit.
Steve Hamilton lives up to his Edgar for best first novel with the second Alex McKnight, "Winter of the Wolf Moon."
It is uncanny how he holds your attention. Read more
Published on Feb. 21 2003 by nobizinfla
5.0 out of 5 stars Winter of the Wolf Moon
This is an excellent read from start to finish. It is hard to figure out "whodunnit" until the last couple pages. Read more
Published on Nov. 30 2002 by SLP books
3.0 out of 5 stars Milodragovich Lite
This is my first Steve Hamilton novel. I liked the Alex McKnight character. Sort of reminds me of James Crumley's Milo Milodragovich--only not quite as much booze and drugs.
Published on Oct. 8 2002 by Skylar Wilson
5.0 out of 5 stars brrrrrrrrrrrr
Maybe it was that I read this in the early months of the year in Michigan, but I really did feel the cold throughout this book. Read more
Published on June 9 2002 by Brian
2.0 out of 5 stars McKnight is an idiot
...Alex McKnight (boy, a clever name) comes across as a complete idiot. Let's see - drive up to your remote cabin and see the door open, so just mosey on in. Read more
Published on May 5 2002 by Stephen B. Kutzer
4.0 out of 5 stars Good enough for a read
this was a pretty good book, i must say that i couldnt have predicted this ending. it kept me reading, i always wanted to read "just one more chapter". Read more
Published on March 2 2002 by Fatteclancey
5.0 out of 5 stars My dad and I both liked this book.
This was a great book. I read it myself (from the library)
and then I bought a copy for my dad for his birthday. He liked it a lot too. Read more
Published on Jan. 7 2002
4.0 out of 5 stars Winter of the Wolf Moon howling good....
This is the second entry in the series for author Steve Hamilton and he delivers. His protagonist, Alex McKnight is a likeable fellow with some problems stemming from his years as... Read more
Published on Dec 4 2001 by Ree Mancini
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