Sunday, March 17, 2024

There are Strange Things out in the Wilderness

Haven's Rock #2
Kelley Armstrong
St. Martins Minotaur
February 20, 2024

I have been a fan of Kelley Armstrong's books for a very long time since I first became aware of her Otherworld series in the early 2000s. Whether it is Urban Fantasy, Mystery, Time-Slip, or whatever Rockton or Haven's Rock could be classified as she consistently delivers unique characters and great stories.

The Haven's Rock Series is a spin-off of the Rockton Series, set in the contemporary Canadian Yukon. Rockton was a well-hidden town, founded initially for people fleeing political persecution. Over the years, it became a refuge for anyone who could pay to get in. Casey Duncan was fleeing her possible prosecution for murder and the revenge of the victim's family. Brought in as a detective reporting to the Rockton Sheriff, Eric Dalton. The pairing became both professional and personal. Casey and Eric are now a married couple. When Rockton fell apart, the two founded Haven's Rock. Haven's Rock is meant as an escape for people fleeing trouble not of their own making, and hopefully, fewer serial killers and psychopaths.

Haven's Rock has accepted a mother and two children whose father was killed in front of them after testifying in a trial. The two boys are the first children in Rockton or Haven's Rock, causing concerns they have never faced before. When the younger boy reports seeing a bear with human eyes near the settlement, no one knows what to think. The boy, Max, is insistent, and everyone is all out to find him when he appears to have been abducted. Plenty of strange people are out in the woods, but why would Max be abducted? Coupled with this dilemma, Casey and Eric have their own issue, which is also about a child.

The Boy Who Cried Bear is another gripping installment in this well-constructed series. While the novel could be read as a stand-alone, I think everyone should start with the first in the series and possibly go back to Rockton. You won't be disappointed!! Thanks to and Minotaur for an advance digital copy. The opinions are my own.

RATING 4.5 Stars

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