THE EMPIRE OF SHADOWS by Richard E. Crabbe


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Can survival skills honed in the concrete jungle serve a man in the forest primeval?

Police Captain Thomas Braddock (Suspension, 2000) has taken his wife and two children out to the Adirondack Wilderness in August 1889 for a vacation from the uniquely urban pressures three of the family face: Tom’s police work, Mary’s profession as a madam, and teenage Mike’s adolescence, exacerbated by his ties to a street gang. Young Rebecca has come along to play and serve as the innocent hostage to fate when crime interrupts their vacation. An Indian named Jim Tupper kills a man in New York and flees to his native Adirondacks. On his arrival, it seems, he kills Mike’s new girlfriend, a maid at their hotel, for no good reason, except perhaps to implicate Mike, the obvious suspect, and to allow Crabbe to draw Tom into the plot. Tom finds a guide to take him into the wilderness to capture Tupper. Although the cop finds his scene-of-the-crime skills, especially marksmanship, useful, tracking the Indian is still no easy task, further complicated by the fact that someone else is stalking Tupper and killing people.

Lots of gorgeous scenery and interesting historical characters give the reader something to watch whenever tension and plausibility lag.

Pub Date: Nov. 21st, 2003
ISBN: 0-312-20614-3
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Dunne/Minotaur
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1st, 2003