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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars C.J. Box knows how to tell a really good story
First Sentence: He set out after breakfast on what would be his last day on earth.

Wyoming game warden, Joe Pickett, makes the very grim discovery of his mother-in-law, Missy's, newest husband shot in the chest and his body being circulated like a whirligig toy from the blade of an electricity windmill. Missy is arrested for murder and asks Joe to help prove...
Published on 4 May 2011 by L. J. Roberts

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Modest
Firstly, I'm from the UK and our values about justice and the use of guns are very different to those expressed here. So I dislike the values expressed here. I know the area and that is modestly written but could have been made so alive. His follow on book is, I consider much better. I will not be reading another in the series without a preview. If you like this book's...
Published 5 months ago by david


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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars C.J. Box knows how to tell a really good story, 4 May 2011
By 
L. J. Roberts (Oakland, CA, USA) - See all my reviews
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First Sentence: He set out after breakfast on what would be his last day on earth.

Wyoming game warden, Joe Pickett, makes the very grim discovery of his mother-in-law, Missy's, newest husband shot in the chest and his body being circulated like a whirligig toy from the blade of an electricity windmill. Missy is arrested for murder and asks Joe to help prove she is innocent. In spite of his dislike for her, he agrees due to his wife and daughters. Joe's friend, Nate, has his own battles to fight after his lover is mistakenly killed in his place and revenge is his goal.

It is unfortunate that the book begins with a portent which is not only completely unnecessary, but reduces the impact and suspense of the first chapter. Fortunately, we quickly move on to detailed descriptions creating a strong sense of place and an intriguing contrast of nature versus technology as well as a strong sense of the man being described.

Box creates his characters well, providing a backstory on each one to introduce them to new readers and reacquaint those who follow the series. Although Box's secondary characters tend to be a bit stereotypical, he makes us realize that stereotypes exist because they real. These characters are nicely offset with Joe who is a man who believes in the letter of the law. However, Joe is not perfect and neither is his family which has normal family issues and problems. Joe believes in the truth, but there is an element of cynicism and mistrust which keeps him real.

His characters are enhanced by the dialogue which has good flow and distinction for each character. Box's Wyoming Governor provides examples of this..."I need more yes-men," he said. "I deserve more yes-men." He grinned, "And fewer independent thinkers like you. Hell, I'm the governor."... and later... Rulon said, ..."What a way to go. I hope it doesn't start a trend." "Too much work," Joe said. "Most criminals don't want to work that hard."

Box writes action sequences with plenty of tension and suspense which include the emotions associated with the events. In fact, the more impactful crime is one without violence and is based on current events. Still, I did enjoy the point where Joe's friend, Nate, talks about the situation getting very Western. There are nice twisty motives and plenty of possible suspects.

The story is relevant as it involves the present economic recession, moving to sustainable energy sources and government subsidies, but not in a way that will age the book in the future. In fact, the some of those factors represent the story's more upsetting crimes. There are some minor flaws; some of the legal elements seemed off to me and the final revelation was not completely unexpected. One of the story threads probably could have been omitted but it added balance to the story and keeps it from becoming too political.

"Cold Wind" is a very good balance of all those elements one looks for in a mystery but not in any way that seems formulaic. No; Mr. Box just know how to tell one really good story and, once again, caused me to stay up way too late to finish it.

COLD WIND (Lic Inv-Joe Pickett-Wyoming-Cont) - VG+
Box, C.J. - 11th in series
G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2011, ARC - Hardcover ISBN: 9780399157356
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Ice Cold, 15 Feb 2013
By 
Tom Stronach (Essex, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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Oh my goodness! Just when you think that after 10 previous books with the same characters, the author cannot surely surprise you any more - he goes ahead and does so with horrendous consequences for the cast of players....

I really can't say too much without giving spoilers but it turns out that the meanest person in the sequence of 10 novels is finally revealed in the closing pages of this book and one should probably not have been surprised at the revelations.

Gruesome death, land grabs, family pulled apart, potential million dollar bribes in the form of promises, politics, wind energy and the power grids to nowhere, it's all here as well as the usual family battles between parents and daughters with familial ties put under even more strain and stress than usual, who would have thought that possible, but it is.

Nate Romaowski's world is ripped apart as we begin to finally find out more about his shady past and why he is so secretive and this marks new beginnings, I suspect, for more violence and retribution in future books.

Box just gets more convoluted in his writing and in bringing in unexpected twists and turns that throws the reader of the track until he is ready to reveal the truth. A truth that Joe, as usual stumbles upon as he fits together all the pieces, pieces that for once he cannot reveal to ANYONE

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: 4 out of 5*
Reading Enjoyment: 5 out of 5
Page length on kindle /iPad: 400 in print I believe but no page numbers on devices*
Plot: 5 out of 5
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars You must read this author, 11 Sep 2011
By 
Leo (Milton Keynes) - See all my reviews
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I have now read all the Joe Pickett novels - and C.J Box's one-offs. Without fail they are brilliant - fast paced, interesting environmental issues, first class mystery - just cracking all round good reads even when read back to back. Can't wait for the next one!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best yet, 10 July 2012
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I have worked through all of the Joe Pickett books and I must rate this one as being in the top three of this series. What you expect from these books is a feeling of the great outdoors, modern day cowboys combined with some sort of a police procedure novel. This is exactly what you get with this story.

One of the strengths of the Joe Picket books is the telling of family life. Joe's relationship with his wife and daughters add dimension to the characters and strengthens the linkage between each of the books.

There is a strong detective feel in this book as Joe searches for evidence to prove that his mother in law is not guilty of murder.

Other reviewers have already outlined the story in this book so I will not repeat that here, simply to say that I felt this was the strongest of the Joe Pickett books that I have read and would readily recommend this book and the whole series to any fiction reader.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Saving the mother-in-law from hell, 4 Oct 2011
By 
Blue in Washington "Barry Ballow" (Washington, DC United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Cold Wind (Paperback)
C.J. Box's latest in the Joe Pickett series features some familiar characters, touches on some new political issues and includes a good amount of action. "Cold Wind" finds Fish and Game Warden Pickett's much detested mother-in-law, Missy, accused of murdering her wealthy fifth husband, Earl Alden. Everyone in the Wyoming town of Saddlestring, where the crime occurs, is ready to believe the worst of Missy Alden and the Sheriff and local district attorney believe that they have more than enough evidence to convict her. Urged on by his distraught wife, Pickett jumps into case along its margins to try and prove that his mother-in-law, guilty of many ethical and more moral infractions, did not kill her husband. His informal investigation gradually turns up more and more evidence that the murder victim had a long line of enemies who hated him enough to do him in.

Moving at a pretty good clip, the plot also includes a long look at the wind energy industry, the ins and outs of the construction of wind farms, and the possible fleecing of the national Government as unscrupulous operators take advantage of federal subsidies for new energy sources--this being the trademark airing of local vs. federal issues that author Box works into most of his Wyoming-based novels. .

Also a big part of the action in "Cold Wind" is renegade/super hero, Nate Romanowski who narrowly avoids an assassination attempt that kills his girlfriend and sets him on the road to bloody revenge. His place in the story eventually connects at the end of Joe Pickett's slow piecing together of a solution to the murder case.

C.J. Box fans will not be disappointed with this clever and rapidly moving story that hits familiar touchstones and provides a satisfying conclusion. While you may not always agree with the political and social issues that Box drops into his novels, they reasonably represent the environment that the author writes about and are rarely uninteresting.

This is a satisfying read that is hard to put down once started. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wyoming mystery series gets better and better, 14 Sep 2011
By 
Maxine Clarke "Maxine of Petrona" (Kingston upon Thames, Surrey United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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The Joe Pickett series keeps getting better and better. In this latest novel, which at the time of writing is the most recent title in the whole series, Joe is back in his old job as the game warden for the Saddlestring district of Wyoming. He loves spending time in the open air and mountain trails, though as ever he is conscious that he is not as materially successful as he'd like to be in order to provide for his family - who have just travelled to Laramie to drop the eldest daughter, Sheridan, off for her first semester at college. There is a lot of tension between the remaining daughters, April and Lucy; doubtless things will come to a head with April, who pushes way beyond any boundary going, pretty soon.

This domestic situation is abruptly ended by the shocking discovery of a body that is hanging from the rotors of one of the turbines at a new wind farm in the region. Joe is personally involved in that the victim is Earl Alden, husband of his awful mother-in-law, Missy. At first it was thought the death was a suicide, but before Joe can catch his breath after climbing up the inside of a windmill to view the body, Missy is accused of murder. It turns out that Earl was about to divorce Missy and hence his considerable wealth and ranch would revert to his family rather than to Missy. The case seems bizarre to Joe and his wife MaryBeth, however, because Missy's partner in crime is alleged to be rancher Bud Longbrake, her previous husband and the man whose land Missy "stole" when she divorced Bud and traded up to marry Earl. Although MaryBeth is under no illusions about her mother, she believes her innocent of the crime and asks Joe to pursue an independent inquiry, given that the sheriff and prosecutor (previously a friend of MaryBeth's) have made their minds up straight away that Missy is guilty as charged. Joe reluctantly agrees to help, within the constraints of his job.

Joe gets nowhere for a while, and wishes he could find Nate Romanowski, his old friend who lives the survivalist lifestyle in the Hole in the Wall Canyon in his avoidance of the law. Nate, however, is having dreadful problems of his own, as someone is seeking revenge for a deed of Nate's described in an earlier book. Nate is homeless (or should I write caveless?) and terribly bereaved. The act of violence against him brings him and Joe together, but Nate is more concerned with sorting out his own life than in helping Missy, understandably enough. This journey of Nate's ends up being a bit of a learning curve for him.

C J Box usually interweaves a scientific issue into his novels, and this one is no exception in its fascinating treatment of the wind turbine business, as the reader comes to see how the Washington trade-offs, the economics and the chancers all operate a massively disingenuous campaign to feather their own nests with empty promises of improving the environment and providing clean energy. From what I know about the technology, the author is spot-on in his dissection of the vested interests and cynical promises involved, and the subplot about the poor farmers who inadvertently ended up selling a tract of land and then having to live on top of a wind farm is moving.

Ultimately, though, this novel is an exiting, tense thriller leading up to the trial of Missy, at which the reader barely knows whether to hope Joe finds some evidence to get her off, or whether to hope that she gets convicted and imprisoned. In the end, there is a twist or two that explains the story and which leaves most of the characters interestingly placed for the next book in the series - which I for one hope will not involve a long wait!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars typically engrossing Box Work, 25 Jan 2013
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This review is from: Cold Wind (Joe Pickett 11) (Paperback)
if you have not ywt sampled the work of CJ Box i advise you to start ASAP- this is one of a series - which is best read in order, but \his stand alone \novels are a great \start point -

BLUE HEAVEN is a fantastic book and serves as a great intro
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absorbing read, 24 Jan 2013
By 
T. Mackinnon "MadMacK" (Dunoon, Argyll, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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A new author for me, but my husband has read C J Box before. We both enjoyed this book and especially the experience of reading on our new Kindle.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Timeless struggles in today's US, 24 Dec 2012
CJ Box's Joe Pickett series just keeps getting better and better. The characters live, the issues matter, and through it all the land, the trees, the animals are vivid, concrete, significant. An excellent story, a much-valued writer.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Evocotive Joe Picket novel, 8 Nov 2012
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A further exellent episode of Joe Picket's life and family as a fisheries and Game office in Wyoming.
The scenary is described in detail and the characters show an intimate understanding of inate human nature.
I would like Joe and his families story to go on and on.
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Cold Wind (Joe Pickett 11)
Cold Wind (Joe Pickett 11) by C. J. Box (Paperback - 1 Feb 2012)
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