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Nevada Barr Ill Wind by Nevada Barr

Nevada Barr Ill Wind (original 1995; edition 2004)

by Nevada Barr

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926109,438 (3.6)23
Title:Nevada Barr Ill Wind
Authors:Nevada Barr
Info:Berkley (2004), Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

Ill Wind by Nevada Barr (1995)

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Book #3 in the Anna Pigeon series, has the national park ranger assigned to Mesa Verde National Park in Colorado. Unlike her previous posts, Mesa Verde is less about the natural beauty and outdoor majesty, and more focused on the archeological interest in the ruins of the Anasazi cliff dwellings. Anna has to deal with controversy surrounding construction of a badly needed upgraded water system, an ex-husband who is stalking and threatening the park superintendant’s secretary, reported sightings of mystic phenomenon, and several medical emergencies. When a child dies the new-age proponents attribute it to the upset spirits – Chindi – and predict things “will happen” with the summer solstice. But Anna is convinced that the real culprits are human.

I’ve only discovered this series in the last year or so and I’m really enjoying them. Anna Pigeon is a great character – intelligent, mature, physically fit and tenacious. She is struggling with her emotions, having never really gotten over the accidental death of her husband a decade or so previously. She shows her vulnerability first in a just-beginning flirtation with a fellow ranger, and later in a renewed interest in FBI agent Frederick Stanton. In general, however, her relationships with the various women she encounters are stronger than with any of the men. I particularly liked how Barr portrayed Anna’s interactions with the little girl Bella.

The plot was a little slow to take off in this book (the murder doesn’t happen until about page 100), but the basic premise is one that would take a while to unfold, so this slow reveal served the story. There were many characters (i.e. suspects) and I was really kept guessing right up to the time that Anna unveiled the perpetrator.

On the whole, this is a very satisfying mystery read.
( )
  BookConcierge | Jan 13, 2016 |
Frederick the Fed seems to be Ranger Pigeon's kryptonite.
A good read where I was left guessing not only by the who, but the what. NPS meets Contiki Tour when Anna lived in the dorms. Once again the scenery and the park is as much as character as the humans. ( )
  skinglist | Mar 21, 2015 |
LIked the book, found it hard to put down due to the interesting assortment of characters. ( )
  Minne2 | Jun 24, 2012 |
Interesting characters and relationships. I like the atmosphere of living in Mesa Verde Park. ( )
  BonnieJune54 | Jun 15, 2012 |
This is an older novel in the National Park Ranger Anna Pigeon series that I had somehow missed. Reading it filled a hole in my knowledge of Anna. I had known forever that she had had a drinking problem and perhaps was a recovering alcoholic. I assumed she started drinking heavily after her husband's death but I didn't know when she had admitted alcohol was a severe problem for her.

Well, now I know. It's in Ill Wind when she is stationed at Mesa Verde National Park that everything comes to a head because she's having blackouts and bugging her sister on the phone at all hours of the night, saying "Zach's dead." (Zach was her husband.) Thankfully her sister is able to convince her this is a problem that will kill her if she doesn't stop. It also helps that a heavy drinker who works construction in the park is a stupid drunk and, being the cop, it's Anna who has to pick him up all the time.

The mystery involves the death of a ranger who was a friend, and who was the stepfather of a handicapped child that Anna has become close to. Anna has two roommates while she waits for better housing, one of whom is a radical ecologist threatening bad things are happening in the Anasazi cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde because the "Old Ones" are angry at what's happening in their homes. Actually bad things are happening and it's Anna's job to figure out who and why, along with a federal agent, our old friend Frederick Stanton.

I always enjoy Nevada Barr novels greatly but this one less so than the others I've read. Can't put my finger on why because it has all the components of the best ones. Maybe it was just hating to see Anna losing control because of the bottle. Anna is so real to me that hurt. There has never been a time, though, when I wouldn't wholeheartedly recommend that if you haven't ever read Nevada Barr, you should run not walk to the library or bookstore to get in on the fun. ( )
  bjmitch | Jun 5, 2012 |
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For Deb and Ed
without whom ...
Well, frankly, I shudder to think
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No graveyards; that bothered Anna.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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aka Mountain of Bones
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Book description
It is whispered that the Old Ones still haunt Mesa Verde - the restless spirits of the Anasazi [Ancient Enemies], who carved their homes in the mountain's face eight centuries ago ... and then disappeared from the Earth.

Newly assigned national parks ranger Anna Pigeon seeks solace from her own personal demons in the ancient cave dwellings of a vanished Native American civilization. But an inexplicable illness affecting visitors to the popular Colorado landmark has dragged her from her reverie - as have two mysterious tragedies: the death of a child .. and the murder of a friend. and now she must find the very human source of the evil wind that is blowing through the ruins. For it threatens more innocent lives. Mother Nature ... and Anna herself.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0425197255, Mass Market Paperback)

Lately, visitors to Mesa Verde have been bringing home more than photos--they're also carrying a strange, deadly disease. And once it strikes, park ranger Anna Pigeon must find the very human source of the evil wind.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:05:17 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Park ranger Anna Pigeon probes the murder of fellow ranger Stacey Meyers in the Mesa Verde National Park. Meyers was investigating the sabotage of equipment used in installing a water pipe through ancient Indian grounds. The construction is opposed by many people.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 4 descriptions

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