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 Winter Study

by Nevada Barr

"For much of Nevada Barr's 14th Anna Pigeon mystery, it's not a question of who-, why- or howdunit, but of whether a crime has been committed at all. No body shows up until almost halfway through the novel, and even then how can you hold a wild animal guilty? That animal is a wolf -- the subject of a 50-year-old 'Winter Study' of wolf-moose relations in Isle Royale National Park off Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Sharing a single generator are a quartet of devoted researchers and a pair of scientists dispatched by Homeland Security ... Amid clashing personalities and conflicting agendas, the atmosphere indoors grows nearly as frosty as the air outside, and the tension ratchets up a few more notches when the wolves abandon their routines, boldly enter human territory and stalk the team. Oversized tracks appear; unrecognized DNA shows up in wolf scat; the mystery deepens. 'It's like wolf plus . . . something,' says one scientist ominously, and after the first death, no one feels safe." -- Washington Post