Force of Nature
by C. J. Box
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2012. 385 pgs. Mystery
Nate Romanowski takes the lead in the latest Joe Pickett novel. Pickett, a Wyoming game warden, is one of Romanowski's few friends, as Nate has taken himself off the grid to avoid the consequences of a terrible mistake in his past. But a formerly good man has gone very bad, and when he comes after Nate, Joe is involved as someone who might inadvertently draw Nate out of deep cover. The action is breakneck in this thriller, and though many of the broken necks belong to the bad guys, Nate himself things his chances of outwitting and outplaying his former mentor, John Nemecek, are slight. As always, Box writes beautifully of the high country. One can feel the bite of the snow, and the cold, piney wind, and hear the cries of Nate's beloved falcons as he releases them to the wild. Force of Nature is the twelfth book in Box's sterling Joe Pickett series. Readers who want to get in at the beginning will need to go back to Open Season, and Nate and Joe first meet in Book 3, Winterkill, but it wouldn't hurt anything too much to read Force of Nature first and then go back. You will really want to.