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on 6 August 2010
Joe Pickett has only one more week to go in the territory around Baggs, Wyoming, before he will be heading back to take up his position of a game warden in Twelve Sleep Country. Back to his family. But in all good conscience Joe can't ignore the reports he's been hearing about campsites being vandalized and an illegally poached elk being stolen from the hunters who tracked the wounded animal and found the carcass neatly butchered. Pickett figures it will take him a week to make his way around the Sierra Madre of Southern Wyoming and then he's homeward bound. What he finds when he gets deep into the mountains makes him shiver with fear because something just isn't right. By the time he finds who is responsible for the strange happenings in the territory his life hangs in the balance and he's completely cut off from any help.

What a great book this was. Such incredible writing prowess by author C. J. Box that my heart was pounding while I read the account of the danger Joe Pickett was in. The descriptions of the magnificent mountains, lakes and valleys in Wyoming were so good I could visualize them without any problem at all. I liked the character of Joe mainly because he seemed like such a normal individual. Not a super hero, just a really dedicated man doing his job to the very best of his ability. The book seems at first to be a rather simple premise of a game warden protecting the area he is assigned to, but it slowly opens out into a much more complex story involving not just inter-state political rivalries, but also political agendas on a national level.

The concepts of the rights of the individual in these United States is at the heart of this story. It was a wonderful vehicle for making the arguments concerning how much governmental control is too much and how much independence from that control can safely be allowed. All in all, a very thought provoking novel. This was the first Joe Pickett novel for me to read, but I have now bought the first book of the series, Open Season (Joe Pickett Novels), and put Winterkill (Joe Pickett Novels) on my Kindle. I can't wait for my husband to start reading about Joe Pickett. I'm thinking we will end up buying everything we can get our hands on written by C. J. Box.
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First Sentence: Three hours after he'd broken camp, repacked, and pushed his horses higher into the mountain range, Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett paused on the lip of a wide hollow basin and dug in his saddlebag for his notebook.

Game Warden Joe Pickett is making the last pass before going home through the territory he has been covering for the past year. He's following up on reports of vandalism and other hunter's game butchered out. He doesn't expect to run into twin brothers who resent being asked to follow the rules and nearly cost Joe his life. He also doesn't expect the only reason he escapes is a woman who may have been an Olympic contender but disappeared. His determination to enforce the law and to possibly rescue the woman sends Joe, with his friend Nate, back into the mountains and an old-West showdown.

Box writes books that are entertaining, exciting and occasionally touching. He also writes book that make you think about the bigger issues and does it in such a way that doesn't preach or become didactic, but makes you weigh both sides of the question and make your own choice. That is a real talent.

The character of Joe Pickett is one of an average man; very human, married, loves his family, loyal to his friends. He learns he is not invincible, but believes in his job even it's dangerous and, perhaps, not smart..."It's my job. I do my job." Even his wife, Marybeth, acknowledges his job is who he is..."You do what you do because you're hardwired for it. You get yourself into situations because you have a certain set of standards..." That relationship and those principles give Joe the structure that defines him.

The interaction between Joe and the other characters is believable, and occasionally humorous. In this book, Box has given Joe two very challenging enemies; both in terms of surviving against them, but opposition of views on issues that are very timely.

One thing, of which I am becoming very tired, is the overuse by authors of the ignorant, obstructive, jealous superior official. Yes, I know it all-too-often exists, but it has become rather cliché.

The pacing is wonderful; it fluctuates between tension and rest. Box's descriptions demonstrate his knowledge and love of Wyoming, and shares that with us by taking us along and letting us see what Joe sees, both in terms of its beauty and potential danger. The dialogue has a natural flow and refreshingly little profanity.

This is a very good story. I became so involved, it was a one-sitting read for me and I am now anxious for the next book.

NOWHERE TO RUN (Lic. Inv-Joe Pickett-Wyoming-Cont)- VG
Box, C.J. - 10th in series
Putnam, ©2010, US Hardcover - ISBN: 9780399156458
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VINE VOICEon 22 December 2011
C J Box very quickly got himself onto my automatic purchase list and I have yet to be disappointed with his work.
Nowhere to Run is another great story featuring game warden Joe Picket and examines the corrupt government versus the little man scenario, corrupt governments being very topical at the moment and I'm not talking about Wyoming, but I digress.
Between the covers of this little gem the pace seldom flags and there are enough thrills and tense moments to satisfy the most jaded reader of thrillers.
If you haven't read C J Box then give him a try I'm sure you won't be disappointed.
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on 30 December 2011
I have to start by saying that the Joe Pickett books by C J Box are amongst my favourites EVER! A refreshing change to the normal mysteries I devour and just wonderfully written and crafted stories. I can't believe he's still relatively unknown but I'm spreading the love one book at a time!
I downloaded the first book Open Season and have read the rest back to back ever since. I don't know what I'll do when I'm fully up to date.....try to be patient I guess!
If you love good, nail biting stories with amazingly human characters then buy this book...but if you can start at the beginning and read them in order then do it!
Enjoy x
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on 27 December 2011
Another wonderful book from C. J. Box about an ordinary,moral ,responsible guy in a poorly paid difficult job. The surroundings and job itself ,being a game warden, are what keeps him here. That and the support of his loving wife and 2 daughters & foster daughter. His trouble making money hungry mother in law is the big domestic thorn in his side. Work wise it is an overbearing top heavy government department management structure with political in-fighting. This time, due to return home after being side lined for a year, he makes a last investigation into a complaint, and ends up in grave danger , with no support or help. Then his friend Nate turns up, & they set off to get to the bottom of things once and for all, knowing they may not make it back. The tension mounts all along, and the ending is superb, & not expected. Are the bad guys really the bad guys, are there others, & who is best served by the outcome.? A thoroughly great book. I have read as many of these as were available, & am off to check if there are any new ones.
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on 2 January 2012
The first few chapters had me debating if this would be a good read for me or if I would end up giving up part way through but that soon changed as Joe Pickett faced the Grim Brothers for the first time! Once the action started it was a great pace with lots of things happening and kept the reader guessing where it could all go. I have only read one other CJ Box book but he is a fantastic writer who keeps you involved and develops the plot and characters all the way through, keeping you glued to the book! Definitely one I would recommend to a mystery fan who wants something different to a inner-city scene. Think 'The Hills have Eyes' vs 'Wild Wild West'
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on 5 February 2013
What can I say about C.J. Box and Joe Picket that I haven't said before? Nowhere to Run is No 10 in the Joe Picket series and it totally knocks your boots off. We have watched Joe Picket change over the years from an honest upstanding game warden who would rather cut off his right arm than break the law to become an honest upstanding game warden who has had to kill people in the line of duty. He has become hardened and with that hardening comes conflicts of conscience as he struggles with doing the right thing as opposed to up-holding the law that he has sworn to do.

Joe is still in the wilderness, literally, after his last outing, but his banishment from his re-extended family to Baggs, was about to be over with his reassignment to Twelve Sleep County and home.

All he needed to do was set out and complete one final check of the district around Baggs on horseback, to investigate the case of the missing and butchered elk, or, he could have just finished some paperwork......

Part of me was mouthing, `do the paperwork Joe, go home to Marybeth and the girls...' but then I knew that was impractical and it wouldn't make for compelling reading. So, Joe riding Buddy with Blue Roanie trailing with his equipment sets off into the Sierra Madre of Southern Wyoming and as usual all hell breaks loose.

Joe Pickett is one stubborn man. If he come across someone hunting or fishing it doesn't matter to him as long as they have the correct permits and they have those permits on them, if they don't, they get a ticket, end off, no discussion.

Maybe if Joe hadn't been so stubborn when he came across a strange looking guy in the mountains who was fishing in a cirque, and after telling himself that the guy was strange and `threatening' and if he wasn't so stubborn, he might just have kept riding on bye, telling the guy to get a permit as soon as he got back to town...

But Joe was stubborn and sworn to uphold the law and he just couldn't let it go....

Joe loses everything, his horses, his gear, his guns and his dignity and only barely manages to escape with his life after discovering that there was not one `strange and threatening' guy, but two, identical twins and they don't want no government man interfering in their simple way of life.

Having followed Joe's exploits over the years you feel so helpless at seeing him so powerless and hating the brothers for what they are doing to him. You find yourself fearing that Marybeth and the girls are going to be left to cope on their own and we have finally reached the end of the trail with Joe Pickett, Wyoming Game Warden, who after all these years can still barely hit the side of a tree with his Glock handgun; cursing at him for never getting better with it, relying on the spray of his shotgun, which he has lost...

The brothers are the archetypical anti-heroes, nasty and mean without one redeeming feature and you find yourself despising them throughout but , Mr Box has one or two surprises left in store for us and as you quickly turn the pages trying to keep up with the pace of the story as it unfolds over 10 days in late summer, you find that your sympathies are stretched to breaking point, and may well shift., as the climax explodes on to the pages in the most unexpected of ways ..... You will not be disappointed.

Nowhere to Run, has all the usual suspects coming in and out Nate Romanowski, who finds his loyalties tested. Governor Rulon who is giving Joe back his life but as usual, Joe's honesty and integrity finds the Governor wishing that he could find an even remoter out post to lose Joe in. and FBI Special Agent Coon finds his cohunes. Marybeth is in trouble with the girls growing up; Sheridan is now 18, sheesh I remember when she was just a baby, it seems like yesterday and Lucy and the newly reunited April Keeley back into the family wasn't exactly the bed of roses everyone thought it was going to be and of course Missy Alden, ne Van Bruen, nee, nee, nee, Marybeth's mother who kept trading up for richer and more powerful husbands is here too annoying every one. Box also throws in some humour too, to lighten the mood from time to time. Dave Farkus `Shut up Dave' doesn't get tired, although if I was one of the 4 men in black I would probably have shot him after the first stupid sentence out of his mouth, but then I suppose I wouldn't have laughed every time he appeared and that's why Mr Box writes and I don't ....

Book 1 - Open Season √
Book 2 - Savage Run √
Book 3 - Winterkill √
Book 4 - Trophy Hunt √
Book 5 - Out of Range √
Book 6 - In Plain Sight √
Book 7 - Free Fire √
Book 8 - Blood Trail √
Book 9 - Below Zero √
Book 10 - Nowhere to Run √
Book 11 - Cold Wind
Book 12 - Force of Nature

Editing for Kindle /iPad: 5 out of 5
Reading Enjoyment: 5 out of 5
Page length on kindle /iPad: 368 Book ends on iPad on page 357 & then as usual 1st chptr of next book
Plot: 5 out of 5
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5
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on 30 January 2012
Nowhere to run is the tenth in Box's series about Wyoming Game Warden, Joe Pickett and the first I have read. Based on this I will certainly be reading more of Pickett's adventures.

Box not only provides us with a brilliantly thriller (and it is more of a thriller that a mystery) but also a cast of convincing characters that I would like to get to know better.

Perhaps the most strongest character however is the State of Wyoming itself which Box portrays more effectively than any tourist guide could hope to do.

Nearing the end of an assignment Pickett follows up reports of vandalism and the theft of other hunter's kills. This brings him into conflict with twin brothers, living illegally off the land. The encounter nearly cost him his life.

To give you a flavour if this were a movie then the opening third of the book would be a cross between No Country for Old Men and Deliverance, with a dash of Seraphim Falls. I found these passages by far the most enthralling.

Later on, while it maintains much of the pace and atmosphere it becomes more a story about big government conspiracies and individuals, both Pickett and his adversaries struggling against bureaucracy, but in very different ways. I found that less satisfactory but still a good thriller.

Pickett's family life and friendships are well painted, although having not read any of the earlier books I found some of the background and references to previous adventures a little confusing. I look forward to putting that right in the near future.
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on 5 June 2014
I have very much enjoyed reading the Joe Pickett series of books and so far 12 books in, this has been my favourite. Anyone who wants to buy the book on the strength of this review, please start with the first one (Open Season) and work through them all as it's well worth it.

Part of my enjoyment of this book has come from the building back stories and characters in the series. The rest has come from the best story of the series. With Joe in trouble from the start coupled with his unwillingness to let something go this makes for a great mixture of action and tension.

I also now have an ambition to visit Wyoming and see some of the sites of the series!
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on 18 April 2016
Fantastic! Unputdownable! I have read all of CJ Box's novels in order and they just keep getting better. This is a gripping thriller that starts with Joe Pickett being under attack in the deep wilderness from man and nature at the same time, and the pace remains relentless. We learn more about how strong the bond is between Joe and Nate and just how dedicated Joe is to his job. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys taut thrillers that keep you on the edge of your seat and keep you guessing right till the end!
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