Not the Ones Dead

by Dana Stabenow

The gripping new Kate Shugak novel by New York Times bestselling author Dana Stabenow. What seems a tragic accident soon becomes a murder investigation as Kate is drawn into a case of political intrigue.

A mid-air collision in the Alaskan wilderness between two small aircraft leaves ten people dead. Was it a bird strike, pilot error… or premeditated murder?

Then an eleventh body is found in the wreckage: a man shot gangland style, twice in the chest and once in the head.

In an investigation that reaches to the highest levels of government, justice may not be served, but Kate Shugak is determined that the truth will out, even at the risk of her life and the lives of those she loves most.

My Take

This is #23 in what has been and continues to be one of my favorite mystery series. (I’ve read them all, though it’s been four years almost to the day since the last one.) I love the descriptions of the Park and its people. That’s why I keep coming back. The mysteries themselves are secondary. I like how Kate’s world is different now, and the addition and growth of new characters, like Johnny and Van, now adults.

There was less suspense in this one. More of a slow burn. I liked that; it gets unrealistic when everyone is always getting shot at or running off doing stupid things. I like Stabenow’s willingness to include recent history and issues. I know a lot of us would like to forget Covid and everything it brought to the surface but we can’t unless we want to repeat it.

Besides this series Dana Stabenow has an Alaska series based on Liam Campbell, an Alaska State Trooper, and two books based on the Coast Guard in Alaska. Those are also good, though I don’t like them as well as the Kate Shugak series. In other genres she has a Star Svensdotter sci-fi series and the Silk and Song Trilogy, a historical fiction series. And now I see she has a series based in Cleopatra’s Egypt, so my want to read list has expanded!