I had to look back in the book several times to figure out - who is she? And was he a hockey player, too? Friend of Gus? I could feel myself going to sleep more than once while reading and when that happens, it ain't good. I know this book, and series, has some tremendous, positive, great reviews.
But sorrily, this ain't one of them. Two stars Mar 11, J. Excellent Debut. One of the "Must Reads" of Brief Synopsis: The small town of Starvation Lake has had better days. Due to Coach Blackburn raising up a bunch of kids from the town into a competitor for the state hockey title, Starvation Lake become a tourist attraction.
Unfortunately, the team lost their one chance at the title and Coach Blackburn died in a snowmobile accident several years later. Enter the main character, Gus Carpenter, in which the story is told in his first person narrative Excellent Debut. Enter the main character, Gus Carpenter, in which the story is told in his first person narrative. Carpenter was the player who is blamed for losing the State title since he was the goalie for the team that year.
He is fleeing from Detroit under mysterious circumstances at the Detroit Times and is now works at the local newspaper, The Pilot. What happens next baffles the town, as Coach Blackburn's snowmobile resurfaces in the wrong lake. Carpenter quickly picks up some of the loose ends and starts to uncover the dark past of Starvation Lake and some of her residents.
It is a compelling story with several interesting characters, each with fundamental flaws. The character development is crafted to perfection, as each character becomes more and more human and as the story progresses. Interwoven between the clues and plot lines are some wonderful recollections of hockey games and memories of the glorious past of Starvation Lake.
These memories add to the realism of the town and the overall story and the accountability of the characters involved. Finding the truth surrounding Coach Blackburn's death is only the tip of the iceberg, and the reader is taken hold of and not let go until the concluding chapters. I would not miss this book when it is released. It is probably the best book I have read so far this year. Definitely a "must read. Stoner More Reviews Jul 06, Joanna rated it it was ok Shelves: this-book-has-a-queer-woman-in-it , mystery , books-read Starvation Lake is a highly atmospheric novel, with memorable characters and a swiftly moving plot.
Bryan Gruley writes so convincingly about small town life that the book, at some points, aspires to literary fiction. He also writes so well about hockey that it could be a poignant coming of age sports narrative. Instead, it chooses to be a mystery, but only manages to be a fairly decent addition to the genre. This is fine at first, but begins to grate by the end of the story.
His crack reporting skills strain credulity when presented in conjunction with his frequent inability to connect a clear line of dots. There are also a number of plot points that are raised but never resolved, which just seems sloppy. Also, some clues distinctive handwriting, anyone read like they are actually written for a movie version instead of a book.
View 2 comments. Shelves: books-by-friends , series , work-review-related-reading. First time novelist Bryan Gruley though seasoned writer--he's the Chicago Bureau chief for the Wall Street Journal creates fascinating,multifaceted, believable characters in this book that you just KNOW you'd recognize if you walked past them on the street.
Their quirks and their mysteries draw you in, as does the overlying story of new details emerging, literally, from the depths about the death of a beloved hockey coach. Presumed an accident, when bullet ridden evidence washes ashore 10 year First time novelist Bryan Gruley though seasoned writer--he's the Chicago Bureau chief for the Wall Street Journal creates fascinating,multifaceted, believable characters in this book that you just KNOW you'd recognize if you walked past them on the street.
Presumed an accident, when bullet ridden evidence washes ashore 10 yearslater years of cover ups and lies begin to unravel in the hands of two reporters for thetown's small newspaper. Warning--this book will keep you up late into the night because you just have to know a little bit more before you go to sleep, and then This is supposed to be the first book in a new series.
If Gruley keeps writing like this, it's going to be a popular one. Fans of Dennis LeHane will especially like thisbook, I think. View all 3 comments. Feb 28, Ann rated it really liked it Shelves: audio , audible-audio , audio , library-wishlist , read A very good first book in a series, a well drawn mystery, with hockey! I'll read another! View 1 comment. Jun 04, Dara S.
Property details for 8792 Starvation Lake Road
If you are a hockey fan, this book is for you. First Sentence: The cast-iron railing wobbled in his hand as he climbed the porch steps. He was hoping to become a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist in Detroit when his beloved boyhood hockey coach, Jack Blackburn, died by drowning in a snowmobiling accident. A police call sends him to Salvation Lake where part of a snowmobile is found. However, the book quickly turned to being a book about people, rather than sport, and I never had any desire to stop reading. I read for character.
Gruley creates great characters. Moreover, he creates fully-developed, interesting, realistically flawed, human characters. None of them are excessive or over the top. Instead, they are believable. Gruley also creates a very strong sense of place. He makes you feel the challenge of the weather but these are people accustomed to living with those challenges.
The story is very well plotted and well written. One thing I personally appreciated was at points when other authors would have been tempted to insert a portent into the story; Gruley refrained from so doing. Gruley has written a wonderful debut novel. I, for one, look forward to his next book. View all 4 comments. Shelves: mystery-suspense-crime-thriller. Aleady downloaded and started The Hanging Tree. Read it in a day.
It was so suspenseful couldn't put it down. Looking forward to more from this author. Gus Carpenter and the characters from Starvation Lake were fabulously written. The plot engaging. Thought I might be put off at first with the ice hockey theme that ran through out, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Haven't enjoyed a book this much since Faithful Place. Definitely will recommend this book to friends. Dec 29, Joanne rated it did not like it Shelves: didn-t-finish , mystery.
Reporter returns home to small town where he lost a state championship hockey match and still plays hockey with his buds. Body of his former coach shows up, but not where it's supposed to be. Too foul-mouthed for my taste. Sep 25, Jmrathbone rated it it was ok. Too much hockey! This would have been better as a novella. The primary plot was buried in hockey pucks. In the end, I was reminded of an old time mystery ploy where everyone gathered in the library where the villain s are revealed.
Jan 01, Wendy rated it really liked it. Gus Carpenter left Starvation Lake to make a name for himself and to exonerate himself for a shame that had been lain on his shoulders when he was a boy playing hockey. He'd nearly done it too, but circumstances landed him back in his hometown, his image and reputation as a newspaper reporter tarnished. He works as an editor for the local paper in town, where his bosses prefer softer news to hard hitting stories.
When new evidence surfaces about the death of his childhood hockey coach who had di Gus Carpenter left Starvation Lake to make a name for himself and to exonerate himself for a shame that had been lain on his shoulders when he was a boy playing hockey. When new evidence surfaces about the death of his childhood hockey coach who had died many years before, several people in Starvation Lake would rather leave the past in the past.
What was perceived as an accident all those years ago, is now being investigated as a murder. The more Gus discovers, the more he realizes just how little he knew his coach--and several of the other townsfolk. I went into the novel hoping for a fast-paced read but found the book to be slow going at first. The author took his time setting the background and preparing the reader for what was to come. I was never bored, however.
I settled into the novel and let it suck me in. And suck me in it did. While the mystery is significant to the novel, so are the relationships and side stories presented on the pages of the book. The sense of place is strong throughout the novel. Starvation Lake by name alone doesn't sound like an inviting place to live, but it is a beautiful mountain lakeside town like many others in my own reading and visualization of the town, it was like a mountain town, but CJ pointed out in her comment it isn't one.
I've never been to Michigan and so have no reference--I tend to pull images out of my own memory or from pictures I've seen. The name of the town is quite fitting in some respects--more than just for the reason given in the novel. The town has suffered its share of financial woes and is struggling to stay afloat.
Business is hurting. The town is also full of secrets, some darker than others. As the story unfolded, it picked up speed and came together in a satisfying way. I feel like I was right there, alongside the characters. Each of the characters was fully developed, none without their own flaws.
Starvation Lake Campground, Stevens County
I liked the fact that the novel had so many layers to it. I am really curious about the author's next book in the series and hope to read it soon. This is Gruley's first book and is set in northern Michigan. This book recounts Gus' growing up years on the local hockey team and the mystery of some doings in Starvation Lake that occurred back in those days. I don't want to say more for fear of spoiling things. The characters drove this story for me. I li This is Gruley's first book and is set in northern Michigan.
I liked all of them, their stories and Gruley's portrayal of them. I enjoyed my time with them and look forward to the next book. The book suffers a bit from the common problem of firsts--it can be a little wordy and detailed in spots. There are a lot of hockey details, which was fine by me but may put others off a bit. Stick with it.
- Cheakamus Canyon (Starvation Lake trail)?
- Gwendolyns Nose.
- Stay Trim While You Quit Smoking.
- SURPRISE SEX ENCOUNTERS (Five Unexpected Sex Erotica Stories).
It is worth the ride. Jun 16, Shelli rated it it was amazing Shelves: read-in Great story and mystery. I live in Michigan and so many of the places and references were familiar to me. I also love hockey which was a theme in this book. This was a page turner and I really liked the characters and character development. I literally did not want to put it down and was crazy with the anticipation of the ending, but still enjoyed the story and the new details and twists that kept popping up.
The characters were very believable and even though it had some very gritty subject mat Great story and mystery. The characters were very believable and even though it had some very gritty subject matter I found it to be a very "real" feeling story. I highly recommend it. Feb 06, Fredrick Danysh rated it liked it.
Gus played hockey in Starvation Lake's youth league. After his failure as a reporter in Detroit he gets a job at the Starvation Lake Pilot as assistant editor. After the snowmobile of a hockey coach who has been missing for ten years washes up on the wrong lake, he and one of his reporters investigate uncovering hidden secrets and unwanted facts about the coach and the town. Mar 15, Sandi rated it it was amazing Shelves: crime-mystery-thriller-suspense , library-express , read Excellent debut mystery. This book was nominated for both the Edgar and the Anthony for best first Novel.
Really enjoyed the small town Michigan setting and the mix of sports and suspense. View all 5 comments. Jul 17, Claudia rated it really liked it. A well crafted mystery, and I thoroughly enjoyed the northern Michigan setting. Apr 21, Cynthia Dawson rated it really liked it. It's like Fargo, as in there is snow everywhere, it's bleak, and moves a high speed with multiple characters influencing the outcome. At the begining of Starvation Lake I quickly picked up on a possible motivation for what popped off this whole thing. It's too obvious!
Lakehouse on Secluded Starvation Lake (The No Nay Never)
It's not THAT! Woo hoo! Cant wait for the twist that reveal what it is. Which, was basically the whole town.
So I still got bamboozled I guess which is what a good suspense is supposed to do. A futher con for the story was the over abundance of characters. When the antagonists are revealed at the end I had to look back to find out exactly who they were. A huge pro for me was Gus. I really liked him.
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I liked being in his head. For that reason I'd continue with this series. Also, this book is written in but the tech seems to still be late 90s for some reason. Im pretty sure most communication in Starvation Lake happened on telephones, and not even cordless ones.
Starvation Lake (Fishing Map : US_MI_40_) | Nautical Charts App
Most professional people in had personal communication devices and were addicted to email. It just seemed more dated than it needed to be. Aug 26, Scott Rhee rated it really liked it Shelves: series-detective , mystery. Brian Gruley's debut novel "Starvation Lake" starts slowly but picks up at around the half-way point. It is there that it delves into some dark, unpleasant topics and a subject matter that may turn some readers off, understandably. At the risk of possibly giving away some spoilers, I'll refrain from mentioning what that subject matter is, just that it is vital to the storyline and cuts to the heart of the motive.
Gruley handles it gracefully, though, and does not trivialize the issue by turning Brian Gruley's debut novel "Starvation Lake" starts slowly but picks up at around the half-way point. Gruley handles it gracefully, though, and does not trivialize the issue by turning it into just another plot device. I consider this more of a character study and an examination of journalism, with a mystery.
Augustus "Gus" Carpenter is the flawed protagonist of the novel. He is the editor of a small newspaper for the small town of Starvation Lake, Michigan. His life is in a bit of a shambles because he recently moved back to town after a brief, unsuccessful stint as a reporter for the Detroit Times. It was unsuccessful due to the fact that he was disgraced and fired because of a story. Strangely enough, he was not disgraced because of plagiarism or libel.
Indeed, his story was the truth. The disgrace was in how he obtained his informationa whistleblowerand the fact that he would not reveal his source to his editors. He now faces potential jail time for his decision to protect his source. Waiting for the shoe to drop, Carpenter spends his time editing stories about Bigfoot sightings, pothole repairs, and recipes for pasties.
When he's not working, he's playing hockey with his middle-aged friends at the local rink and then hitting the local pub afterward for copious amounts of alcohol. Life is pretty boring until pieces of a snowmobile wash up on shore of Starvation Lake. The police identify it as the wreckage of a snowmobile belonging to Coach Jack Blackburn, the much-loved hockey coach in town, which is odd considering Blackburn supposedly died five years ago on another lake miles away.
Granted, Blackburn's body was never found, as the city council at the time deemed that dredging the lake would have been a financial burden on an already-strained city budget. After forensics examines the wreckage and reveals a bullet hole, the word "murder" begins to circulate in town. Indeed, Carpenterwho was living in Detroit when Blackburn was allegedly murderedquickly discovers long-dormant rumors of Blackburn's many affairs with married women in town. There were, it turns out, plenty of angry husbands who had a motive. The newsman in Carpenter can't resist the allure of a juicy murder mystery, but his investigation uncovers a seamy underbelly to the town he thought he knew and loved, an underbelly far worse and uglier than he could have imagined.
Things also start getting personal when his mother is somehow linked to the police investigation and his best friend is arrested as a suspect. Can a journalist be completely objective in anything he or she writes? What if the news being reported directly affects loved ones and close friends? Gruley, the Chicago bureau chief for the Wall Street Journal, brings his deep knowledge and experience of journalism and investigation into play in the novel, creating an intensely thought-provoking and believable psychological thriller.
It's an outstanding debut novel from a writer who has a giftmuch like his protagonistof looking past the story to see the hidden stories within. Slight chance of rain Showers in the Morning, then chance of rain Showers and slight chance of Thunderstorms in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 80s. Southwest Winds 10 Mph.
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