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The Gray Ghost Murders: A Sean Stranahan Mystery Hardcover – 21 Feb 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Books; First Printing edition (21 Feb. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670025690
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670025695
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 2.8 x 23.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 509,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By L. J. Roberts TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 5 Mar. 2014
Format: Hardcover
First Sentence: The hands shook as the watcher adjusted the focus ring of the binoculars.

Katie Sparrow’s search and rescue dog doesn’t find the reported lost hiker. Instead, they find a buried body which, when uncovered, was a murder victim. And then they find another. Fly-fishing guide, painter and PI Sean Stranahan is hired to find a lost tackle box. The box is also an entry to his being introduced to the members of the Madison River Liars and Fly Tiers Club; a group of men who bought a cabin along the river. It is they who really want to hire Stranahan to find two valuable fishing flies which have been stolen from their cabin. The trail turns very dark as Sean is asked to help the police with the murders while still searching for the flies.

From the beginning, the author’s love of fly fishing is very apparent. Even if fishing and hunting, are not your style, don’t let that stop you from reading this book for it is the characters that carry the story.

Stranahan may be described as extremely good looking, but that really doesn’t much play into the character. Yes, women are attracted to him, but he is anything but a womanizer, and how refreshing is that. Not only that, there is no profanity in the book; another nice change. And although he knows how to use a gun, he doesn’t own one. If anything, it is Sherriff Martha Ettinger who comes across as the tougher character, except where her love life is concerned. Then, she is classically vulnerable. Katie, the dog handler, facilitates moments of humor…”Godfrey, a schoolteacher with a scratch to itch and lay south of his belt buckle and a history of women cutting his fact out of photographs….” What’s nice is that are the characters are clearly drawn and distinct.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 66 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Not a bad book. 14 April 2013
By Ernie Wild - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This book is the second in a new series. I liked it better than the first and that's a good sign. It seemed a bit tighter with a plot line that was more believable. Actually, I think the writer is better than the books so far. I'll be anxious to read the next installment. One problem he faces is that this is a hobby horse type series. Fly fishing being one of the writer's favorite "hobby horses" obviously. This is fine but it is somewhat limiting and soon the main character is at least going to have to move around a bit to keep the series fresh. I'm sure the writer is well aware of that and I wouldn't be surprised to see the character in New York or New England doing some fishing and murder solving in a future book. And then there is Florida and........
I think the books are going to get better as time goes on but this one is pretty good. There is a ton of "new" mystery writers around these days and a lot of the heavily touted writers aren't measuring up very well in my opinion. One problem I have with many of the new mystery/crime writers is too many of their books are way too long! Also some pretty good writers are suffering from poor editing. It is something you didn't encounter much in the past. It has become very apparent in the last twenty or thirty years. Plus it seems a lot of these books are sort of cranked out with a deadline feel to them. So sloppy writing and sloppier editing quite often is overlooked by the publishers, or that's what it seems like. The length of this book is fine as was the editing. Let's hope this writer doesn't succumb to these problems and pressures.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
An Author's perspective 14 Jun. 2013
By David L. Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
As a fledgling author myself, I'm learning to look at books in a different light. The story line has been well presented in other reviews, so I'll not dwell on that. Several things intrigued me. First was the weaving of fly fishing into the story. As a fly fisherman(once one, always one) the scenes rang true and fit well into the story. Its been drummed into me by my editor that a sense of time and place is important to a reader. McCafferty nails it. The premise of th murders is realistic, the development of the characters is well done. Most are people you'd like to meet and share a cup of coffee. Editing, in this day and age a rarity, was well done. All in all this is a first class product and deserves to be read.
D. Lincoln Jones, Author
High Grade, A novel
A very good read that kept me involved from first page to last. 5 Mar. 2014
By L. J. Roberts - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
First Sentence: The hands shook as the watcher adjusted the focus ring of the binoculars.

Katie Sparrow’s search and rescue dog doesn’t find the reported lost hiker. Instead, they find a buried body which, when uncovered, was a murder victim. And then they find another. Fly-fishing guide, painter and PI Sean Stranahan is hired to find a lost tackle box. The box is also an entry to his being introduced to the members of the Madison River Liars and Fly Tiers Club; a group of men who bought a cabin along the river. It is they who really want to hire Stranahan to find two valuable fishing flies which have been stolen from their cabin. The trail turns very dark as Sean is asked to help the police with the murders while still searching for the flies.

From the beginning, the author’s love of fly fishing is very apparent. Even if fishing and hunting, are not your style, don’t let that stop you from reading this book for it is the characters that carry the story.

Stranahan may be described as extremely good looking, but that really doesn’t much play into the character. Yes, women are attracted to him, but he is anything but a womanizer, and how refreshing is that. Not only that, there is no profanity in the book; another nice change. And although he knows how to use a gun, he doesn’t own one. If anything, it is Sherriff Martha Ettinger who comes across as the tougher character, except where her love life is concerned. Then, she is classically vulnerable. Katie, the dog handler, facilitates moments of humor…”Godfrey, a schoolteacher with a scratch to itch and lay south of his belt buckle and a history of women cutting his fact out of photographs….” What’s nice is that are the characters are clearly drawn and distinct.

McCafferty provides excellent descriptions which help the reader understand the love of fly fishers and give a desire for traveling to Montana…”Above him was one of those summer skies that people who live in the East can’t believe are real, the light over the Gravelly Range lavender bleeding to pink, the clouds rimmed with golden light from the setting sun and the river a study in pointillism, as wavelets bounced colors back and forth…”

The plot is interesting and compelling. There are layers and twists enough to keep you going. There is a classic short story, "The Most Dangerous Game," referenced which, if the reader is familiar with the story, gives a hint of the story’s path, but one isn’t certain quite how it’s going to play in. There are characters one suspects, but enough uncertainty to keep one guessing.

“The Gray Ghost Murders” is a very good read. It kept me involved from first page to last.

THE GRAY GHOST MURDERS (PI- Sean Stranahan-Montana-Contemp) – VG
McCafferty, Keith – 2nd in series
Viking, 2013
Drawn right into this story... 10 Jun. 2013
By Lori Caswell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Two bodies have been found on Sphinx Mountain, and Sheriff Martha Ettinger suspects murder, but she needs more details and some evidence wouldn't hurt. She again needs the help of private investigator Sean Stranahan. He has already been nosing around the area on another case. He's been hired by The Madison River Liars and Fly Tiers Club, a group of fly-fishermen, who have reported some very valuable flies stolen. Could the disappearance of a vintage Gray Ghost fly from a riverside cabin in the Madison Valley be connected to the gray ghosts who haunt Sphinx Mountain? Sean is determined to find out even if it means questioning a Congressman and putting himself in the line of fire.

Dollycas's Thoughts
I love the way Keith McCafferty writes. Last year I reviewed The Royal Wulff Murders, his descriptive style and melodic flow drew me right into the story. He continues right where he left off in this sequel.

"For the wonder of a trout had nothing to do with its spots or the sheen of its flanks, but its ability to pull the angler back through time until he was no longer what the world had made of him, but who he was when the world was new."

He also crafted a wonderful mystery with full rich characters that jump right off the page. From the young boy to the men nearing the end of their lives, their individual stories shine but still blend together in a story that is about so much more than fly fishing. The strong women in this story are also so well written.

In addition to the beautiful Big Sky Country pictures McCafferty draws with his words there is suspense, chills, and surprises peppered with a bit of humor and even a little romance. You don't need to know a thing about fly fishing to enjoy this mystery although if you do, you will love this book. I liked this one even more than the last one and the only fish I catch comes from the grocery store.

I sure hope the author has the third installment in this series in the works. I wish I could start reading it today!!
for Fly fisherman Mystery lovers 26 Feb. 2013
By rhonda - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
4 STARS

The Gray Ghost Murders is a follow up with the same characters plus a lot of new ones from Royal Wuff Murders. I read Royal Wuff last march 2012 and reviewed it here [...].
I gave it 4 stars too.

If you love fly fishing and murder mysterys you will love The Gray Ghost Murders. It talks more about the flies of fly fishing then a lot of actual fishing. But does make you want to go out to the woods. Except ours are all covered with snow. Their are a few mysteries going on in this book.

Sean gets asked to look into finding the two missing flys. They are worth a bunch of money but the value is sentamental. Sean gets tricked into going to look for one thing and it is actually to meet up with someone else to talk about the missing flies. One is the Gray Ghost fly.

Sheriff Ettinger and team are out looking for a lost hiker when they find a grave in the trees. Before too much time comes their party gets in the way of a bear and her cubs. After they get the wounded tracker to the hospital. The next day Sean is asked to take them to the graves and look around for them.

Two bodies are buried out their. The bear had dug up part of the one so they could not even say who or how they died.
So Sean is busy, he still paints, fishing guides, and P.I. work. He is now working on a case for the sheriff Martha Ettinger. His personal life he met someone new and started dating her. He is still sleeping in his office to save money.

I keep thinking that he would get together with the Sheriff someday. I don't really feel connected to any of the characters. I do like Sean,Martha but the others not so much. Even the ones who end up dead. Maybe it is just me today.

I was kept guessing on everything till it had all played out. loved the settings of the story.
I was given this ebook to read and asked to give honest review of it when done by Netgalley.
02/21/2013 PUB PENGUIN GROUP Viking 320 pages ISBN 9780670025695
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