Mike's usual strategy was to gently stir the pot and wait for patterns to emerge, but this case was boiling over from the day Willimina showed up at his office. Freelance investigator Mike Ironwood doesn't hesitate for a moment when a lovely stranger asks him to help her get to the bottom of suspicious happenings on her family cattle ranch. The case is intriguing, and Willimina even more so. Six days in, the case has turned up two dead bodies, an alphabet soup of secretive federal investigators, and a client who just might be The One. That's when things get complicated. When a greedy DEA agent and his complicated and deadly triggerman kidnap Willy, Mike enlists help from his brother and sets out to rescue her from a conflicted cartel jefe. The trail leads them deep into Mexico, but they come home with dangerous unfinished business. Ochoco Reach introduces Mike Ironwood, his special ops brother Daniel, and Bucket, a Catahoula leopard dog who is equally at home herding cattle and pinning bad guys to the floor. Together, they are formidable allies who also seem to attract trouble at every turn.
Having failed to review (maybe too strong a word)…… pen some thoughts on my reading over the past 3 months, I’m struggling to know where to begin now.
Well a couple of months on from reading this one, I remember the characters and the major plot details and the outcome, so I must have had fairly positive thoughts when reading this. (Scored it a 3.5 from 5, just after reading)
I do like PI novels generally, probably more so than mysteries centred-around police officers. This one wasn’t too bad. There was an interesting plot concerning our ranch owner Willy who had been receiving veiled threats. Soon after the involvement of Mike this escalated to her kidnap arranged by a love-stricken cartel leader and the participation of a rogue US government agent. Mike Ironwood – a bit of a loved-up puppy dog himself by this stage, recruits his half-brother – half Native American Daniel to conduct some black-ops of their own south of the border in Mexico and recover Willy.
Plenty to like…….plus points – a decent plot which held together fairly well; several story strands which entertained me – dead bodies, kidnap, a rogue agent, Mexico, drugs, people-trafficking, gun-play and a fairly satisfactory outcome. (Possibly a couple of slightly unlikely coincidences helped us arrive there.)
The relationship between Mike and his half-brother Daniel was entertaining, I liked how they bounced off each other and could trust how they each had the other’s back. Mike and his dog also scored higher than me than the love angle between Mike and Willy. I wasn’t quite reaching for the sick-bucket as the romance between Mike and Willy developed, but it was slightly irritating. Maybe, I don’t like romantic elements featuring so strongly in my books.
Probably not a crime fiction read and maybe less mystery genre than a kind of action thriller. We know what is happening fairly early on and it’s a question of correcting the wrong. Overall enjoyable without threatening the top all-time reads list. Would I want to read more from the author? On balance, no. No reflection on him, just I’ve too many other books that need reading.
I received a copy of this one from Jessica @ MBM Book Publicity in return for an honest review. Cheers.
Ochoco Reach was enjoyed over at Crime Fiction Lover – here.
There’s more about the author over at the publisher’s website – word hermit press here.
Read in April, 2016