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White Sky, Black Ice (Nathan Active Mysteries Book 1)
by Stan Jones

Published: 2003-07-01
Kindle Edition : 292 pages
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In the small Alaskan village of Chukchi, what are the odds of two suicides occurring in a matter of a few days? State trooper Nathan Active discovers that his suspicions concerning the deaths are well-founded; the two men were murdered. But what was the motive and who killed ...
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Introduction

In the small Alaskan village of Chukchi, what are the odds of two suicides occurring in a matter of a few days? State trooper Nathan Active discovers that his suspicions concerning the deaths are well-founded; the two men were murdered. But what was the motive and who killed them?

Editorial Review

White sky ("a high film of opalescent cloud... that leached all contour and distinction from the snowy landscape") and black ice ("black and perfect like ice when it was new and thin and deadly") are two aspects of the physical life in the remote Alaskan village of Chukchi, where young and ambitious state trooper Nathan Active is starting his police career. Nathan has decidedly mixed feelings about Chukchi, despite its often stunning beauty. He was born here to a 15-year-old Eskimo girl, who quickly fostered him off to a white family in Anchorage. Also, within its boundaries it contains all the problems facing native Alaskans. Entrapped by poverty and alcohol, too many of them end their lives with suicide. Even an enterprising local leader, Tom Werner, who has fought to ban alcohol and to keep a nearby copper mine open to provide jobs, can't stop two more men from killing themselves in the book's first few pages.

But to Nathan, with his outsider's sensibilities, these last two suicides look suspicious. Even though his politically disgraced superior and the local police warn him off, he stubbornly digs into the circumstances of the deaths and finds connections to the international consortium that owns the Gray Wolf copper mine.

Nathan is a fascinating character, bristling with anger against his birth mother for abandoning him, but still drawn to her and the native life. His feelings about a determined young woman called Lucy Generous are equally ambivalent: part of him loves her sexual frankness, while the other part warns him that a native wife might not help his career.

Stan Jones, an environmentalist, journalist, and bush pilot, obviously knows and loves the people and territory he writes so well about in this, his first mystery. --Dick Adler

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by Marcella D. (see profile) 05/23/23

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