Published: June 6, 2017
On most days, the wilderness gave me peace. But not tonight.
In a land sculpted by glaciers, the forest is on fire. Thick smoke chokes the mountain air and casts an apocalyptic glow over the imposing peaks and vistas of Montana’s Glacier National Park. When firefighters are called in to dig firebreaks near the small town bordering the park, a crew member is shocked to unearth a shallow grave containing human remains.
Park Police Officer Monty Harris is summoned to the site to conduct an excavation. But with an incendiary monster threatening to consume the town, Monty seeks help from Gretchen Larson, the county’s lead crime scene investigator.
While the two work frantically to determine the true identity of the victim, a teenager suddenly disappears from one of the campgrounds in Glacier. Could the cases somehow be connected? As chances for recovery of the missing boy grow slimmer and the FBI finds only dead ends, Gretchen and Monty desperately race to fit all the pieces together while battling time, the elements, and their own unresolved inner conflicts.
National park police officer Monty Harris and forensic anthropologist Gretchen Larson take turns narrating the author’s engrossing third novel set in Montana’s Glacier National Park. When a young man with a crushed skull of a young adult is found buried in the park, Monty and Gretchen set out to ascertain his identity and catch his killer, amid a raging forest fire. They also have to look for a missing thirteen-year-old boy, Jeremy Corey. Gretchen and Monty are each plagued by ghosts from their pasts: Gretchen, who was institutionalized as a teen in a Norwegian mental facility, suffers from parasomnia, causing her to act out unconsciously while sleepwalking. Her parasomnia recurs the night before the discovery of the young man’s body. The hunt for Jeremy dredges up painful memories for Monty, who had a boyhood friend who similarly disappeared and was never found. The suspense builds as the pair race to stop a monster who apparently keeps victims alive for days before killing them.
Although there are a number of plot lines in this book, they do not blur or cause confusion, but blend into a wonderfully told story.
A fantastic series with beautiful descriptions of nature at its best and worst.