Cold Case File

In one of the books, not this one, there are two detectives named Champaign and Urbanik.

If you are snuffling around for a new mystery series, and the Alex McKnight series by Steve Hamilton set in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is new to you, and you happen to like the same stuff I do, I have a recommendation for you: the Alex McKnight series by Steve Hamilton set in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

There’s the cover [see above] of the fourth book in the series, or what I think would be the cover if the book does indeed exist in the real world and not only on my Android phone. And there’s the cover [see below] of the fifth one, which I am in the middle of.

Take my advice and read them in order.The first book in the series is called A Cold Day in Paradise. It sets the scene: a one stoplight town called Paradise situated on the icy southern shore of Lake Superior in the U.P.. You also get the cast pretty much assembled, most notably Alex McKnight, a Detroit cop retired on full disability — with one of the disabling bullets still lodged near his heart — who mopes around in the snow, chops wood for the snowmobilers who rent his cabins, drinks gallons of Molson’s Canadian, and solves crimes. Many crimes. It turns out murderers swarm on the shores of Lake Superior even more than they do in the vast empty deserts of Tony Hillerman’s New Mexico, which is saying a lot.

So many murders it takes a SEVEN McKnight mysteries even to begin to describe them. Start with the first one, Cold Day, continue with Winter of the Wolf Moon, proceed to The Hunting Wind, then the two pictured above and finish up with two more after that whose names I don’t know.

If you are anything like me, after kicking through the six foot snow drifts for a volume or two, you will phone the author and say, “Author Hamilton, you have done well. Very well indeed, sir. I applaud you.” If you are unlike me, I cannot predict how you will react. Perhaps you will weep. Perhaps you will warble like a nightingale. If you are exactly like me, you will have read the books already and are even now writing an identical post.

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