Tuesday, January 30, 2018

A Yukon Wilderness Guessing Game

Rockton Novel #3
Kelley Armstrong
Minotaur Books
February 6, 2018

The third novel in Kelley Armstrong's Rockton series, after City of the Lost and A Darkness Absolute, begins with an unexpected arrival on the landing strip that services an isolated settlement. Rockton, in the Canadian Yukon, is inhabited by people who are running away from their pasts. There is no internet, no electricity, no cell phones, no mail, and no way of getting out. Rockton is surrounded by wilderness, and the only people living outside the town are even further off the grid. The mysterious town council, who operates outside the settlement itself, makes all decisions regarding who is admitted. This time, the council has dropped a significant problem for Town Sheriff Eric Dalton and Detective Casey Duncan. The new arrival is Oliver Brady, and they are told he is a serial killer. The town is supposed to keep him secure for several months, after which his wealthy stepfather will make other arrangements. That's a tall order for Eric and Casey, with a one cell jail, one other deputy, and townsfolk who are supposed to be kept in the dark about their prisoner. News travels, though. Very quickly, factions form; those who believe Brady should be disposed of and those who think he is being deprived of his fundamental civil rights. When he escapes, with what could only be assistance from the inside, and people start dying, Eric and Casey must find him. The fact that the council stands to be paid a considerable sum for a successful resolution (whatever that might be) is not the primary consideration, but the safety of Rockton.

I am a fan of all of Kelley Armstrong's series, from Otherworld, Nadia Stafford, and Cainsville to Rockton. She writes characters that stick with me and has a gift for original settings and stories. I liked This Fallen Prey, but not as much as the first two. The action was well-written but Eric and Casey seem to bounce from one crisis to the next. The question of Brady's innocence or guilt was ongoing and kept me guessing. This Fallen Prey is a transitional book, setting up for new developments and ending with a bit of a cliff-hanger.

Thanks to Minotaur and NetGalley for an advance digital copy. The opinions are my own.

RATING- 3 Stars

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