Sunday, October 11, 2015

The Precipice / Paul Dorion / 322 pages / Scary Story, October Challenge

Samantha Boggs and Missy Montgomery have disappeared while hiking the Appalachian Trail.  They are twenty-one and twenty-two and have just graduated from Pentecost University in South Carolina and planned to head to West Africa to do missionary work after the hike.  Maine game warden, Mike Bowditch, is called in off a pricey beach vacation with his girlfriend, Stacey Stevens.  Stacey is a wildlife biologist, pilot, scuba diver, crack shot, tracker, and the only daughter of Charley and Ora who "practically adopted Mike when he was a rookie warden in desperate need of personal and professional guidance."  Bowditch is teamed with Nonstop Nissen, and ex-con bee raiser, whose skills on the AT are legendary.  He is a piece of work.  They discover the PLS - point last seen, and narrow the search parameters.  Stacey joins the search, battling memories of her own horrific experience on the trail. 
This spine-tingling tale is a masterpiece of shock and awe.  Mr. Dorion repeatedly shocks the reader utilizing characters, events, and historical perspectives.  The reader is likewise awed by the beauty of the Maine wilderness.  We have hillbilly mafia, a possible serial killer, alleged coyote attacks and bounty, an irrepressible game warden (reminiscent of C. J. Box's Joe Pickett), an engaging mystery, and a struggling love affair...something for everyone.

"The names change...but hate reigns eternal.  Only humans can be truly evil."

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