Cold Hearted River by Keith McCafferty

Cold Hearted River

Keith McCafferty

Cold Hearted River is a thrilling adventure, moving from Montana to Michigan, where a woman grapples with the secrets in her heart, to a cabin in Wyoming under the Froze To Death Plateau, and finally to the ruins in Havana.

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In the sixth novel in the acclaimed Sean Stranahan mystery series, Montana's favorite detective finds himself on the trail of Ernest Hemingway's missing steamer trunk. Buffalo Jump Blues, fifth in the series, is now available.

When a woman goes missing in a spring snowstorm and is found dead in a bear's den, Sheriff Martha Ettinger reunites with her once-again lover Sean Stranahan to investigate. In a pannier of the dead woman's horse, they find a wallet of old trout flies, the leather engraved with the initials EH. Only a few days before, Patrick Willoughby, the president of the Madison River Liars and Fly Tiers Club, had been approached by a man selling fishing gear that he claimed once belonged to Ernest Hemingway. A coincidence? Sean doesn't think so, and he soon finds himself on the trail of a stolen trunk rumored to contain not only the famous writer's valuable fly fishing gear but priceless pages of unpublished work.

The investigation will take Sean through extraordinary chapters in Hemingway's life. Inspired by a true story, Cold Hearted River is a thrilling adventure, moving from Montana to Michigan, where a woman grapples with the secrets in her heart, to a cabin in Wyoming under the Froze To Death Plateau, and finally to the ruins in Havana, where an old man struggles to complete his life's mission one true sentence at a time.


Advance Galley Reviews

I received this book through FIRST TO READ and as soon as I got it, I sat down to read it. My first thought was the cover and title makes it a "Oh I have to read this" book. Then, I started to read. The first chapter and beyond was difficult to read. I couldn't focus. I kept having to go back and reread the same sentence multiple times. The writing style was very hard to digest. The characters were impossible to get to know. They were more like paper dolls than real people. I got lost reading this book but not in a good way.

Rating: 2.75 Thanks to Penguin, I received an ARC for this book in exchange for an honest review. I wanted to like this book very much, the premise was very promising and the story itself was well-crafted (weighed down occasionally by the discussions of fly fishing), however, ultimately I could not get on board with the writing. The writing style was very reminiscent of Ernest Hemingway's style (Heminingway also features heavily in this book) who in turn was influenced by his years as a journalist. I enjoy Hemingway's style at times, but it did not work for me here. The short truncated sentences, describing merely events made me feel as though I was watching scenes unfold through a blurry screen, a constant barrier hampering my imersion. In addition, frequently events will be skipped over, and the reader only knows it happened because Sean will summarize it to Martha the next day, which only made me feel further removed and disconnected from the characters. This meant that the characters felt very two dimensional to me, I would recommend this book to those who want to enjoy a mystery novel and are not looking to get heavily involved with the characters.

 


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