Saturday, January 1, 2022

Book & Audio Review: Cold Wind by Paige Shelton

Cold Wind

Paige Shelton
Narrator: Suzie Althens
Series: Alaska Wild (Book 2)
Publication: Minotaur Books (December 8, 2020); Dreamscape Media (December 1, 2020)
Length: 296 p.; 9 hours and 7 minutes

Description: Second in a new series set in Alaska from beloved cozy author Paige Shelton, Cold Wind will chill your bones.

Beth Rivers is still in Alaska. The unidentified man who kidnapped her in her home of St. Louis hasn’t been found yet, so she’s not ready to go back.

But as October comes to a close, Benedict is feeling more and more like her new home. Beth has been working on herself: She’s managed to get back to writing, and she’s enjoying these beautiful months between summer and winter in Alaska.

Then, everything in Benedict changes after a mudslide exposes a world that had been hidden for years. Two mud-covered, silent girls appear, and a secret trapper’s house is found in the woods. The biggest surprise, though, is a dead and frozen woman’s body in the trapper’s shed. No one knows who she is, but the man who runs the mercantile, Randy, seems to be in the middle of all the mysteries.

Unable to escape her journalistic roots, Beth is determined to answer the questions that keep arising: Are the mysterious girls and the frozen body connected? Can Randy possibly be involved? And—most importantly—can she solve this mystery before the cold wind sweeping over the town and the townspeople descends for good?

My Thoughts: The second book in the Alaska Wild series is filled with strange events. Beth Rivers is still hiding from the stalker who kidnapped her, but she is finally back to writing again. She is having flashbacks to some of the events of her kidnapping that her injury and brain surgery has hidden though. 

Then there is a mudslide, two-young, mute mud-covered girls appear at the newspaper office where Beth runs the local paper. Looking for their home exposes a hidden trapper's cabin that had gone unnoticed and the very private man who lives there. Worst of all a body is discovered in the trapper's storage shack. The woman isn't known to any of the residents and it appears that she had been frozen.

The girls make a drawing that seems to lead to the home of Randy, who runs the Mercantile. Like most of the residents of Benedict, Alaska, Randy is the kind of man who keeps to himself. Few know that he came to Alaska with his wife. The wife hated the place and left a couple of weeks after their arrival. At about the same time, the house of the Hortons, another recently arriving family, burns to the ground leaving the remains of a child, but the second two-year-old's body is not found in the debris. It is believed that the parents left Alaska because of their grief.

While Beth is investigating these strange occurrences in and around Benedict, her case is making progress back in St. Louis. DNA evidence on a blanket found with Beth finally gives a name to the man who kidnapped her. Her mother, who is quite a unique individual, is on the hunt for him but somewhat distracted from her long-time hunt for her missing husband who disappeared when Beth was a child. 

I loved the Alaska setting. And I loved Beth who is gradually getting her life back after the trauma of being kidnapped. The story was filled with engaging characters who are filled with mystery and secrets. I can't wait to read DARK NIGHT which will be coming out in December to find out what is next for Beth and the other residents of Benedict. 

I chose to listen to the audiobook of this one which was narrated by Suzie Althen. She did a good job with the many characters and the pacing of the story. 

Favorite Quote:
His house was warm and comfortable, the fire and the lantern light cozy, but primitive beyond anything even in Benedict. 

He must have read my mind. "I have a generator and some powered lighting, but I like to save it for when I'm working."
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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