Books by Joseph Heywood

Joseph Heywood is the author of the Woods Cop mystery series, a critically acclaimed series published by Lyons that includes Ice Hunter, Blue Wolf in Green Fire, and Chasing a Blond Moon. He is also the author of The Berkut, Taxi Dancer, The Domino Conspi


RED JACKET by Joseph Heywood
Released: Sept. 18, 2012

"Heywood's dialogue-driven story, which manages to be both brisk and lumbering, reads less like a self-contained tale than the opening salvo in an ongoing saga—which presumably is just the idea."
The creator of the Grady Service Woods Cop adventures (Strike Dog, 2007, etc.) launches a new series that follows the adventures of another Upper Michigan game warden a century earlier. Read full book review >
STRIKE DOG by Joseph Heywood
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2007

"Though some spread around the middle slows the action a bit, Heywood's colorful cast is, as usual, redemptive."
Michigan Conservation Officer Grady Service (Running Dark, 2005, etc.) tracks a savage new species: the serial cop killer. Read full book review >
STRIKE DOG by Joseph Heywood
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 2007

"Though some spread around the middle slows the action a bit, Heywood's colorful cast is, as usual, redemptive."
Michigan Conservation Officer Grady Service (Running Dark, 2005, etc.) tracks a savage new species: the serial cop killer. Read full book review >
RUNNING DARK by Joseph Heywood
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: June 1, 2005

"Engrossing stuff. Lots of well-plotted action and an offbeat, affecting love story."
The year 1974 marks an increasingly bitter war in the Michigan backwoods that the bad guys keep winning. Read full book review >
BLUE WOLF IN GREEN FIRE by Joseph Heywood
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: Sept. 1, 2002

"A bit plot-heavy, perhaps, but our stalwart hero and his sexy girlfriend make a couple most readers will enjoy trekking with."
Conservation Officer Grady Service, who patrols the vast, imaginary Mosquito Tract in Michigan's Upper Peninsula, is a man made "to live big and hard," which is why he loves his job so much—the breathtaking beauty of his surroundings, the paradoxical savagery of the animals and weather, and, of course, the irresistible pull of danger. What he doesn't love are poachers, particularly when their target of choice amounts to an endangered species, and their weapon of choice is anything but sporting. It's been a long time, for instance, since wolves made a habitat out of the Mosquito Tract, and Grady bristles at the thought of them as prey for fat-cat trophy-hunters wielding 50-caliber rifles. And if wolves are generally rare in the Mosquito Tract, a blue wolf qualifies as a kind of miracle, though one that's merely a come-on to the trigger-happy. Poachers and trophy hunters, however, are small potatoes compared to the miscreants who blew up a federal animal lab. At first, zealots belonging to the Animal Freedom League seem the obvious suspects—until Grady begins viewing the explosion as a cold-blooded experiment in make-believe. The two human corpses inside may not have been collateral damage at all, he decides, but rather the intended result of an elaborate and deadly cover-up. Before Grady can get to the bottom of the convoluted goings-on, he'll be in the sights of a 50-caliber rifle himself. Read full book review >
ICE HUNTER by Joseph Heywood
MYSTERY THRILLER
Released: June 1, 2001

Conservation Officer Grady Service thinks nothing could be worse than the early release of Limpy Allerdyce, incorrigible poacher and attempted murderer, who's returned from prison to the pristine vistas of Michigan's Upper Peninsula just in time for the busy summer season. Then the body of Limpy's son is pulled from a fire with a bullet in the back. Heywood (The Snowfly, 2000, etc.) spices Grady's debut with signs of corruption deeper than a midwinter snow stretching all the way from industrial polluters to the statehouse. Read full book review >
THE SNOWFLY by Joseph Heywood
Released: Sept. 1, 2000

"More Pynchon than Percival, this madcap fish story updates the Grail quest with unsettling violence, preposterous schemers, and an abundance of randy women who dispense pithy statements on the meaning of life—and can't wait to jump into the nearest trout stream."
Heywood's fourth (The Domino Conspiracy, 1992, etc.), a mystical, irreverent wisdom quest, imagines a vast international conspiracy that links spies, loquacious sexpots, bumbling journalists, a famous macho writer, and trout fishers hunting for a mythic insect. Read full book review >
THE DOMINO CONSPIRACY by Joseph Heywood
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Sept. 1, 1992

A dense and often plodding thriller—more cold-war espionage- -from the author of The Berkut (1987), etc. In early 1961, on the eve of the Vienna Summit in which new President Kennedy and Russian Premier Khrushchev will first take each other's measure, disaster looms. An elaborate plot by Russian conservatives is designed to bring about Khrushchev's downfall and death at the hands of Albanian assassins. A psychotic CIA agent with a murderous dual personality, frustrated because his personal plan to bring down the Albanian government has been thwarted, targets JFK for assassination. Both the US and Soviet governments are trying to piece together various clues about these situations. On the Soviet side is the Soviet Operations Group, first featured in The Berkut; leading the American effort is former CIA operative Beau Valentine, also from the earlier book. Heywood doesn't make it easy for the reader, what with quick cuts from scene to scene (no more than four pages at a stretch for the most part, often fewer), myriad new and recurring characters and relationships, and regular dead-end (emphasis on ``dead'') results to most investigative trails. All is leavened with generous dollops of hard sex and brutal violence. Much here to provoke serious thought—the manner in which a single piece of intelligence information can affect the course of history; how the Bay of Pigs fiasco might have colored Khrushchev's impression of JFK and US policy; etc.—but only a truly persevering reader will make the full journey down all the novel's labyrinthine pathways. Read full book review >