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Deadly Currents

(An RM Outdoor Adventures Mystery #1)

3.37  ·  Rating details ·  471 ratings  ·  107 reviews
The Arkansas River is the heart and soul of Salida, Colorado. It fuels the small town's economy and thrums in the blood of twenty-seven-year-old Mandy Tanner, a river ranger. When a whitewater rafting accident occurs, she deftly executes a rescue, but a man dies anyway. But it wasn't the river rapids that killed him, it was poison. Tom King was a rich land developer with b ...more
Paperback, 300 pages
Published March 8th 2011 by Midnight Ink (first published March 1st 2011)
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3.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  471 ratings  ·  107 reviews

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Feb 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: nook, 2011-reads
I really wanted to like this book. I've spent quite a bit of time in Colorado and love most places in the state, so the setting of this book appealed to me. However, Mandy, the main female character, was too immature and too prickly to like. She constantly lashed out at her boyfriend and her brother. The plot was just OK and I had the killer figured out well before the end. I certainly could have done without the "dumb blonde" jokes.

I've also become tired of what seems to be a trend in current
Martha Cheves
Mar 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Deadly Currents – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat

‘This was her second week on patrol as a brand-new seasonal river ranger, still under the supervision of Steve, the head river ranger. Sure, she had run all the whitewater sections of the Upper Arkansas for years as a rafting guide… But now guides like Gonzo relied on her to rescue their customers who’d been snatched out of their grasp by the river. Slowly Mandy gained on the second swimmer, a young woman. The man in fron
Feb 16, 2012 rated it did not like it
I really hated this book. The main character seemed to be bipolar and totally irrational. Every choice she made and emotion she expressed was completely off base in terms of normal human beings. Her motivation was ok but her responses were from another planet. I don't think I'll read anything by this author again in case her other characters are also like this. Plot was ok.
Nov 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
With rookie River Ranger Mandy Tanner and her boss Steve Hadley watching, things are about to get very dangerous on the Arkansas River in Colorado. One of the river rafts has flipped and tossed equipment and passengers into the swirling river churning towards some deadly rapids. With odds against them before they start, Tanner and Hadley start trying to rescue as many they can as fast as they can. That results in Mandy Tanner performing her first river rescue in increasingly dangerous conditions ...more
Giovanni Gelati
Feb 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
White water rafting anyone? The novel itself moves like a category five: raging, foaming, and churning all the way to the end. Hold on to the covers of this novel, the pages turn quickly, as racing through this whodunit is not an option. Beth herself will be stopping by the blog on occasion today to check comments so she can respond to them, so feel free to ask away. Enough already, what is between the covers on this one:
“The Arkansas River is the heart and soul of Salida, Colorado. It fuels the
Feb 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Mandy Tanner is on her second week of serving as a seasonal river ranger on the Arkansas River, a fantastic location for whitewater rafting. Mandy is still under the supervision of Steve Handley, head river ranger, when both Mandy and Steve realize that Gonzo Gordon, a rafting guide, was in trouble with the three-raft pod he was leading down river.

Steve and Mandy both spring into action in an attempt to rescue the occupants of the rafts. Mandy manages to reach the woman who had taken a spill but
Aug 04, 2012 rated it it was ok
Beth Groundwater was a rafting guide on the Arkansas River in Colorado & wrote a mystery featuring a rafting guide turned river ranger.

It's a bit rough around the edges, but given the author is a Coloradan writing about Colorado, there's no confusion about the setting (I'm thinking of a show we watched last night where the characters went to the Colorado Mountains and were so very clearly in a Pacific NW forest).

The mystery itself I liked, and I also agree with others that the author has nai
Apr 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a new series for Beth Groundwater and it is as good as her earlier one.

Mandy Tanner is a river ranger working along the Arkansas river in Colorado. When she rescues a man from an upended raft and gets him to land she discovers he is in serious distress and works to save him. When he dies anyway and it is determined to be murder, not a water accident, Mandy is on the case to try and find out who killed him, and why.

As a first book in the series this one takes a fair amount of time to set
Mary Brown
Mar 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Deadly Currents was a very good read. The mystery lasted throughout out the whole book and there were enough suspects to keep you guessing. The characters were well developed, relationships have room to grow in future books. The setting descriptions were very well written and descriptive, so much so that at times I felt I was right there. The writing style flowed easily and editing was good. There was humor, sadness and mystery all contained within the book and in my opinion, that makes for a gr ...more
Beth Groundwater is a new author for me. I have read 2 RM mysteries and will others. Mandy is a ranger for the Arkansas Headquarters Recreational Area (AHR There is a lot of information of the work the rangers do. RM is a combination of her boy friend and her first initial. White water rafting and fly fishing is the major activity of the area.
Mandy is on river patrol watching the rafters. A boat collapses and there people to recuse. Her partner heads for the woman and Mandy goes to help the man.
Aug 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Mandy Tanner, River Ranger, rescues a man in a white-water river rafter accident who turns out to die, and it turns out he was murdered. Mandy and the sheriff's office work to solve this crime. The victim, Tom King, a local developer has lots of enemies, but the question is just who exactly sent him to his death.

I really liked this book, lots of colorful characters and likeable characters. I found that I really cared about what happened to them, and to the river-rafting company that Mandy and he
Gusto Dave
The author of this title is an RMFW member. For that reason, we do not rate these selections. We’re kind of biased. However, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t have them on our shelves. And you’ll see this message on any other titles that come from our members. We do hope that you’ll consider reading it, though. ;)

Gusto Dave, Publicity Chair for RMFW
Susan Jo Grassi
Jan 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. Having lived in Colorado for 35 years, I took great pleasure in reliving my own Arkansas river adventures while reading this book. I can't wait for the next in the series to come out. What wild, white water ride!
Diana Biggs
Apr 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Love this Colorado author - has a great sense of place, well developed western women, fun reading.
Goodreads Description- The Arkansas River is the heart and soul of Salida, Colorado. It fuels the small town's economy and thrums in the blood of twenty-seven-year-old Mandy Tanner, a river ranger. When a whitewater rafting accident occurs, she deftly executes a rescue, but a man dies anyway. But it wasn't the river rapids that killed him, it was poison. Tom King was a rich land developer with bitter business rivals, who cheated on his wife, refused to support his kayak-obsessed son, and infuria ...more
Kari Wainwright
Jun 08, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite
Running the Arkansas River rapids in the Colorado Rockies is not for the meek. A Class V rapid can toss a raft and its riders head-over-heels into the foaming water and turn them into human debris dodging rocks and other dangers in the whitewater.

Deadly Currents protagonist, Mandy Tanner, has left her river guide job to turn to law enforcement as a river ranger. In her twenties and new to the profession, she has much to learn, both on the job and in her personal relationships. But she is gutsy
May 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2012
The Arkansas River is the heart and soul of Salida, Colorado. It also is a great tourist attraction for fishermen and white water rafting adventurists. For Mandy Tanner it is home. She grew up in Salida, raised by her Uncle Bill and working as a river guide for his white water rafting business. This Summer she is a Seasonal River Ranger for Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area (AHRA). She has completed her training and into her second week on the river when she takes part in tricky river rescue. ...more
Mar 02, 2013 rated it liked it
As a survivor of Seidel's Suckhole myself, I can tell you that Beth Groundwater paints a very realistic picture of whitewater rafting in that section of the Arkansas River, and she does a great job bringing the towns of Salida and Buena Vista to life on the page. Our sleuth Mandy, a seasonal river ranger, at times seems a bit immature to me, but I have to remind myself that she is quite young. Or maybe I'm just that old. ::sigh::

The story kicks off with a daring river rescue in which Mandy haul
Angela Myers
May 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
I have to admit I'm not really a water person. I don't even like to soak in a bath. My idea of enjoying the water is listening to it babble in brooks and writing insipid poetry about it.

But that didn't keep me from being sucked under by this book and becoming totally immersed in learning about white water rafting and the people who are involved in it. I immediately liked the protagonist, and though I was a bit suspicious of the love interest for awhile, I'm sure that was intentional, and by the
Sheila Beaumont
This was an entertaining, fast-paced, traditional, outdoor adventure-and-mystery novel, which I quite enjoyed. In it, a local developer on a group whitewater-rafting expedition falls off a raft, and despite river ranger Mandy Tanner's best efforts to save him, does not survive.

It turns out he was poisoned, and Mandy is determined to find out whodunit. On the whole I liked the heroine, though she does have a tendency to overreact to things and is much too easily offended. But she is going through
Julie Lence
Apr 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
Ms. Groundwater has done it again--she kept me guessing until the very end! For those who enjoy mysteries, and for those who enjoy river rafting, this is the book for you. River ranger Mandy has already pulled one dead body out of the water; a local man poisoned at the start of his river rafting adventure. As she rescues others from kayaks and rafts tipping over, she searches for clues leading to the identity of the man's killer. Along the way, more tragedies befall her that lead to a heart-stop ...more
Norma Huss
Jul 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries
This book introduced me to Mandy, a river ranger, and a bunch of other "river rats" who look to the Arkansas River in Colorado for work and recreation. This is a mystery that had me guessing the whole way, while fearing for the safety of everyone involved.

Was it accident or murder? And why? And, is Mandy endangering herself by asking too many questions? And what's with her and Rob? I eagerly followed Mandy to the end of the book, learning all those answers, and delighting in Mandy's character a
Oct 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2011, mystery
**Received this book as an author donated copy**

When I read the premise for Deadly Currently, I was immediately intrigued - the idea of a river ranger - which we normally don't see as a job occupation and then a mystery to book - I was excited. And Ms Groundwater did not let me down. From the beginning to the end, there were twists and turns that I couldn't predict (although i'm discovering more and more that I suck about identifying those twists before they happen ;) ). A satisfying conclusion
Nov 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
Beth Groundwater's Deadly Currents introduces the reader to a new protagonist Mandy Tanner. Many is a river guide turned river ranger and gets her first mystery when a raft over turns and dumps the riders into the river. Mandy attempts to save two of the passengers but one dies as she gets him to shore. The dead man is a rich developer named Tom King. When it is discovered he was murdered Mandy's uncle is the suspect.
I really enjoyed reading about rafting on the river and the outdoors and that
Aug 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Just a really cool book with a really cool main character and setting!! I really enjoyed mostly everything about this book. I was a bit apprehensive going into this book, because this book was classified as a cozy, which can really be hit or miss with me. In my opinion, it isn't. The other thing is that this book is really, really well written. What I loved most about it, is the outdoor setting. Beth did an awesome job of taking the readers to the town of Salida Colorado!

Most def. a series I wou
Maureen Mullis
Feb 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cozy-myseries
This is a good mystery, fast-paced with interesting characters in the different setting of river rafting. I liked this book a lot, and I like author Beth Groundwater's writing. I still like her Clare Hanover mystery series better, but this was enjoyable as well. I know she's coming out with two more books in this series and I plan on reading them as well! If you like outdoor aventures and mysteries, I recommend this book!
Feb 17, 2012 rated it really liked it
A very good start to this series. Great locale - the Arkansas River in Colorado and featuring a former guide now a river ranger. Plenty of excitement, a good mystery and a set of very likeable and admirable characters. I have been receiving Beth's recommendations for some time and am pleased to finally read one of her books. It won't be the last.
Jul 26, 2011 rated it liked it
In the category of fantasy fulfillment this novel rules. If you've ever wanted to be a river rafter, park ranger, or do anything like that, you'll enjoy this mystery set in Colorado. There's lots of information about what park rangers do, and how to handle a kayak. We've got a curious, to the point of meddlesome protagonist, and Nora Roberts like suspense. Enjoyable light read.
Nola Myer
Apr 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I was surprised by how much I liked this one. It was given to me and I'm not into rafting at all. Well, at least I wasn't. Now I'd like to try. Along with the rafting and scenery details, the mystery was well crafted and pulled me along at a great pace. I thought the main character was very fleshed out. I'll read more of this series.
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
Not the most well written book I’ve ever read, but it was an amusing mystery and I enjoyed the portions on Salida river rafting.
Mar 04, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 25, 2010 rated it really liked it
I went to high school in Colorado... and I just loved learning about the culture of river rafting... something I am deathly afraid of since I can't swim! I thought the characters were great and loved how Groundwater pegged the stereotypical Coloradoan! The storyline was great too! It kept me guessing...I look forward to some more books by this author.
Jun 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011-reads
This was a good start to this series. I enjoyed the setting with the main character as a river ranger and former white water rafting leader. I also liked that she objected when her boyfriend tried to take over because she was female. She is no weak character. Looking forward to more in this series.
Julianne K Fulcher
Rafting adventure mystery

I loved the descriptions! I felt like I was there and could visualize the settings. I also loved trying to solve the case - but its twists and turns threw me off, I loved the read!
Light, cozy mystery. I enjoy mysteries set in outdoor environments, so this one fit the bill. The characters were likeable, although I often cringed with some of Mandy's huffy responses to others, including her boyfriend. I tried to remember when I was that age and I probably would have gotten testy easier back then, too. But it still grates on my more mature outlook today.

I believe I'll try the next in the series. As a Kansan, it's almost like home to read about our neighboring state. However,
Jaclyn H
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining fast read. I didn't think it would hold my interrest but I was wrong. Great river murderer mystery.
Jun 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: borrowed
Having read Groundwater's Claire Hanover Gift Basket Mystery series, I was eager to try her other books. This one did not disappoint - it's well written, the mystery moves along nicely, and the references to Colorado are definitely fun for a native. I couldn't help but be annoyed with Mandy though, through a good part of the book, and her inability to communicate effectively with her boyfriend. Especially since in the end, (SPOILER) he wasn't even a killer or someone you didn't like. I think the ...more
Jun 22, 2012 rated it really liked it
Fast who dun it book! The drama on the river I really was imagining all the rapids splashing and cold water.
Feb 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, 2011
Good first in the series. Can't wait for the next one!
Apr 16, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really wanted to like this book . . .

But I could not stand the protagonist, seriously I wanted to punch her in the face. She was always over reacting, stupid selfish, not willing to listen, ugg. And after the way she treated Rob, he is going to run a business with her, no way.

Also, I really hate the overuse of the italic font. This is a stupid hang up that is all mine but if you are going to use italic make it count, not repeatedly as someone's thoughts. And what girl thinks about herself/to
Lynn Demsky
Jul 01, 2012 rated it liked it
love the water, lakes, rivers – boating, canoeing, paddle boating and this book was just not my cup of tea! I didn’t care for Mandy, she wasted to much time trying to show off and never being who she really was. I didn’t care for her attitude towards men (even her brother) at all. Why she had a dog I have no idea because she left it alone way too much…..took me over a week to wade through the book and when I had it finished I decided NEVER would I go water rafting under ANY circumstances! This w ...more
Apr 28, 2013 rated it liked it
I think this series has the potential to be very interesting mostly because of the location. The action takes place in Colorado in an area where there's fly fishing, white water rafting, as well as skiing. The area economy survives mainly on tourism which means a constant turnover of people in the area along with the local residents. Given the somewhat risky nature of the sports available for vacationers to enjoy, there are also plenty of opportunities for accidents as well as murders to take pl ...more
Lyn (Readinghearts)
Dec 27, 2011 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: someone looking for a cozy mystery with an outdoor adventure setting
Recommended to Lyn (Readinghearts) by: Sisterhood of the Traveling Book
Deadly Currents is the first in a new cozy mystery series by author Beth Groundwater. As most cozys do, this series has a focus, the town of Salida, Colorado on the banks of the Arkansas River and the types of sports that are prevalent in that area. In this particular edition the backdrop is the white water rafting tourist industry. The main character in the book is a seasonal river ranger on the Arkansas, and a former rafting guide. IF you are a cozy mystery reader who likes white water rafting ...more
Jan 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries, reviewed
I really enjoyed Deadly Currents. The author has done an excellent job of recreating the setting of the Salida and Buena Vista, Colorado areas, and that made me better able to relate to the story, I think.

I found the book very hard to put down. There was a lot of action, the characters were all well developed (even the dog's personality was well drawn), and the best part, I had no idea "whodunit" until the end of the book (a *big* plus in a mystery book for me)! I am eagerly awaiting the next bo
Cathy Cole
Beth Groundwater has written one strong mystery and her knowledge of whitewater rafting and river lore brings her Colorado setting to life.

No matter how strong the mystery or how vivid the setting, I am a character-driven reader, and I have to admit that I had a couple of problems with Mandy Tanner. For one thing, she's too emotionally immature for me. She blew up at the slightest provocation even before the second death in the book. She's also one of the clumsiest investigators I've ever seen.
Batch Batchelder
Jan 07, 2012 rated it it was ok
Upon reading the description, my instincts told me this would be at least "chick-lit-esque". I bought it as it was on the Kindle Daily Deal for $0.99 but should've trusted the instincts as they were right.

Overall, I'd say this was a mediocre murder mystery with some significant cheese factor via quirky character development and some awkward, unnecessary romance novel drivel sprinkled in for not-so-good measure.

Format: Kindle via Daily Deal ($0.99)
Susan Day
River Antics

A former river guide-now a river ranger-becomes involved in an accident (or murder) on the Arkansas River in Colorado. Mandy isn't a particularly likeable heroine. Yes, she's lost loved ones, but she's just too crabby and snippy to garner much reader sympathy. She preaches about her uncle's poor eating habits, but tends to live on peanut butter that she scoops directly from the jar with her fingers.
Dick Edwards
May 20, 2013 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ken Schloman
Jan 26, 2015 rated it it was ok
I must admit that if I had not read novel #3 in the series-- FATAL DESCENT-- instead of this one, I probably would not have continued the series. While well written, technically, the characters were weak and the plot so-so. On the plus side , if #3 is any indication, the author has greatly improved her craft for the series. I'm going to pick up #2 in the series to follow the series development.
Jan 10, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing and slow

I had hoped for a really adventurous mystery. The first few pages were enough to make you hold your breath. Then the story slowed down and became a cozy mystery. The Ranger was a whiny woman throughout the story...jumping to conclusions constantly. I had high hopes this series would be about a brave woman...not one who doesn't listen to reason.
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I write two mystery series, the Claire Hanover gift basket designer series and the Rocky Mountain Outdoor Adventures series starring whitewater river ranger Mandy Tanner. The first book in my Claire Hanover series, A REAL BASKET CASE, was released in hardcover in 2007 and re-released in trade paperback and ebook in November, 2011. It finaled for the 2007 Best First Novel Agatha Award. The second b ...more

Other books in the series

An RM Outdoor Adventures Mystery (3 books)
  • Wicked Eddies (An RM Outdoor Adventures Mystery #2)
  • Fatal Descent (An RM Outdoor Adventures Mystery, #3)