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A Cold Day for Murder (A Kate Shugak Investigation Book 1)
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Group Read Discussions > September 2018 Group Read: A Cold Day for Murder, by Dana Stabenow

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message 1: by Nancy, Co-Moderator (new)

Nancy Oakes (quinnsmom) | 9357 comments Mod
Please join Bill for discussing A Cold Day For Murder here.


Bill Thank you for setting up the thread, Nancy. This thread is for those who are reading the book and don't want any spoilers. Nancy has set up a separate thread for those who have finished the book and may want to include spoiler information in their discussion.

This is a link to that thread.

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


Bill Just to start things off, here is a bit of background information on Dana Stabenow, taken from wikipaedia.

She was born in Anchorage Alaska in 1952, so just a bit older than me.. (that last bit isn't in wikipaedia).
She attended University of Alaska and received a BA in Journalism
She writes in a variety of genres; SciFi, mystery/ crime, suspense / thriller and historical adventures.

She has three other series and has also written standalone novels. The Kate Shugak series began in 1992 and as 2017, she has written 21 books in the series.

A Cold Day for Murder won the Edgar Award for best paperback original in 1993.

Looking forward to your thoughts as you progress through the book. Enjoy!


Bill These are the characters in this story. Apologies if I've missed any.

- Kate Shugack; main character. She previously worked for the Anchorage DA's office as an investigator. Kate is Aleut
- Mutt - her dog (wolf?)
- Jack Morgan - her ex-boss, Anchorage DA
- Fred Gamble - FBI agent
- Kenneth Dahl - another DA investigator
- Abel Int - Hout - Kat's 2nd cousin
- Mark Miller - missing Park Ranger
- Ekaterina - Kate's gramdmother
- Mandy - Kate's neighbour
- Xenia - Kate's cousin
- Bennie and Enid - owner's of The Roadhouse
- Mac Devlin - mining owner
- Marvin Dementieff - tour guide
- Jim Chopin - Cop and Chopper pilot
- Martin - Xenia's brother
- Bobby - Viet Nam vet and ham radio operator
- Sandy Halvorsen - Bootlegger
- Billy Mike - Mayor (sort of) / tribal chief

Hopefully that might help you as you read the story. Enjoy!


message 5: by M.L. (new)

M.L. | 365 comments I just started and noticed the authenticity of the setting and some of the terminology, descriptions. "He looked like Sam McGee from Tennessee before he was stuffed into the furnace of the Alice May." Of course I looked it up and it's from The Cremation of Sam McGee which was published in "Songs of a Sourdough"; a sourdough meaning a resident of the Yukon. This is the sort stuff you don't find even on research. It's a fun way to discover new terms.


Bill M.L. wrote: "I just started and noticed the authenticity of the setting and some of the terminology, descriptions. "He looked like Sam McGee from Tennessee before he was stuffed into the furnace of the Alice Ma..."

I never noticed that. I also liked what seemed to be the authenticity of the setting. I've never been to Alaska but I've been in the Northwest Territories and also Thule, Greenland during the winter season.


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments I read this book over 20 years ago. My wife and I went to Alaska in 1995 for 25th anniversary. My wife noticed our guide reading this book, asked her the title, and bought it when we came home. We both have read the complete series and recommend it.


Bill Thomas wrote: "I read this book over 20 years ago. My wife and I went to Alaska in 1995 for 25th anniversary. My wife noticed our guide reading this book, asked her the title, and bought it when we came home. We ..."

I like that story. Really makes the book more personal.


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments Bill wrote: "Thomas wrote: "I read this book over 20 years ago. My wife and I went to Alaska in 1995 for 25th anniversary. My wife noticed our guide reading this book, asked her the title, and bought it when we..."

:)


Jan C (woeisme) | 36385 comments I think I may have read this years ago but it isn't ringing that many bells yet.

I'm a Robert W. Service and Jack London fan. Pierre Berton is another writer of this area, having been born in Whitehorse.


John (Just bought an Oculus 2 VR, so less time to read these days!) | 1 comments I just joined this group a week ago and saw this posted as the next read. I have been joining book clubs to force myself to read outside of my same 2-3 authors I always read. Thanks for such a great choice for this month. Absolutely loved it. The characters and setting, storyline, everything would not allow me to put it down. Already bought the next book in the series.


message 12: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Jan C wrote: "I think I may have read this years ago but it isn't ringing that many bells yet.

I'm a Robert W. Service and Jack London fan. Pierre Berton is another w..."


Or Farley Mowat - Never Cry Wolf. John Straley also has a detective series set in Alaska. The first book is The Woman Who Married a Bear.


message 13: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill John wrote: "I just joined this group a week ago and saw this posted as the next read. I have been joining book clubs to force myself to read outside of my same 2-3 authors I always read. Thanks for such a grea..."

I'm glad you enjoyed it John and glad to hear you're enjoying the group so far. Feel free to provide any spoiler comments on the book on the other thread if you wish. :0)


Sandi | 18 comments Just finished the book I was reading so the September book club selection came at a good time. I purchased A Cold Day for Murder when I saw it nominated but planned on reading it at a later date. It's Labor Day and it's pouring down rain in Houston. (no picnics, today). What a great day to read a good book. Will be joining with the group on this one......


message 15: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Sandi wrote: "Just finished the book I was reading so the September book club selection came at a good time. I purchased A Cold Day for Murder when I saw it nominated but planned on reading it at a later date. I..."

I'm glad you're joining the discussions, Sandi. Sorry about the rain. It's sunny here but there is a nice cool breeze blowing in off the deck.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1487 comments I'm 72% through.


message 17: by Donna, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 3 stars

Donna | 2178 comments Mod
This is another one I read many years ago and I agree the setting is particularly well done.


message 18: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Linda wrote: "I'm 72% through."

It's a nice easy read, eh?


message 19: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Donna wrote: "This is another one I read many years ago and I agree the setting is particularly well done."

It did make me want to dig out my parka...


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1487 comments I finished last night. I was impressed with the book and plan to read more.


message 21: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Linda wrote: "I finished last night. I was impressed with the book and plan to read more."

I'm glad you enjoyed it. I've got the 2nd book on my bookshelf.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1487 comments I've got it on my wishlist


message 23: by T (new) - rated it 2 stars

T (twoo) | 18420 comments I've read them all (both series) and wish there were more!


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments T wrote: "I've read them all (both series) and wish there were more!"

My wife and I like the Jessie Arnold series by Sue Henry She and Stabenow are friends and have done book tours together. Book 1 is Murder on the Iditarod Trail
After our Alaska trip we received a letter from Alaska Cruise West inviting us on a mystery cruise with Sue Henry. We passed on another cruise, but started reading her books.


message 25: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill T wrote: "I've read them all (both series) and wish there were more!"

What other series? I see the last one in her Shugak series was in 2017. Maybe that means she'll write more?


message 26: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Thomas wrote: "T wrote: "I've read them all (both series) and wish there were more!"

My wife and I like the Jessie Arnold series by Sue Henry She and Stabenow are friends and have done book tours ..."


Darn. Another series for me to check out.. The mystery cruise idea sounds very interesting.


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments Stabenow also has the Liam Campbell Alaska state trooper series. My wife has read all of them. I'm still working on them.
Alaska Cruise West went bankrupt in 2005 or so. Our ship, The Spirit of '98, was used in the Wyatt Earp Kevin Costner movie. It was only 100 passengers plus crew.


Suzanne | 64 comments I read and enjoyed it. Thanks for the introductory information. I was happy, but not surprised, to hear the author is from Alaska - the setting seemed very realistic. And I loved the description of different cultures as well as the country. I'll definitely look for more books in the series.


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments Bill wrote: "Thomas wrote: "T wrote: "I've read them all (both series) and wish there were more!"

My wife and I like the Jessie Arnold series by Sue Henry She and Stabenow are friends and have d..."


:)


message 30: by T (new) - rated it 2 stars

T (twoo) | 18420 comments Thomas wrote: "Stabenow also has the Liam Campbell Alaska state trooper series. My wife has read all of them. I'm still working on them.
Alaska Cruise West went bankrupt in 2005 or so. Our ship, The Spirit of '98..."


Yup, Liam Campbell series - less of these than the Kate Shugak series...…

Love Mutt!


Carol (carolmn) | 7 comments I know very little about Alaska (I’m British) so am enjoying the book so far as a great way of finding out more about the setting and the lifestyle. It sounds cold!


Tone  | 318 comments Same here, Carol. I also think it's great to learn about other cultures and places that I most likely will never visit in real life. And it sounds cold indeed. We are used to chilly winters here in Norway, but nothing like the freezing cold described in this book.


message 33: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Thomas wrote: "Stabenow also has the Liam Campbell Alaska state trooper series. My wife has read all of them. I'm still working on them.
Alaska Cruise West went bankrupt in 2005 or so. Our ship, The Spirit of '98..."


I may have to check that series out too.


message 34: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Suzanne wrote: "I read and enjoyed it. Thanks for the introductory information. I was happy, but not surprised, to hear the author is from Alaska - the setting seemed very realistic. And I loved the description of..."

It's always encouraging when a new book series is interesting enough to want to try more of them. Glad to hear it. I also want to read more.


message 35: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill T wrote: "Thomas wrote: "Stabenow also has the Liam Campbell Alaska state trooper series. My wife has read all of them. I'm still working on them.
Alaska Cruise West went bankrupt in 2005 or so. Our ship, Th..."


Mutt is an excellent character indeed.


message 36: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Carol wrote: "I know very little about Alaska (I’m British) so am enjoying the book so far as a great way of finding out more about the setting and the lifestyle. It sounds cold!"

I always enjoy exploring new areas and it's great when an author can portray the location in such a way that you can feel yourself there. And yes, if Alaska is anything like the Northwest Territories and such in winter, it is indeed cold.. :)


message 37: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Tone wrote: "Same here, Carol. I also think it's great to learn about other cultures and places that I most likely will never visit in real life. And it sounds cold indeed. We are used to chilly winters here in..."

I guess it depends on what part of Norway? Are you in the south or north?


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments Bill wrote: "Thomas wrote: "Stabenow also has the Liam Campbell Alaska state trooper series. My wife has read all of them. I'm still working on them.
Alaska Cruise West went bankrupt in 2005 or so. Our ship, Th..."

:)


message 39: by Kimiko (new)

Kimiko | 69 comments I've read this book many years ago and have purchased and read every one in the series and now I"m also reading the Liam Campbell series. I love the full descriptions of Alaska. Having never been there, the reader gets a wonderful sense of the land and its people. Additionally, Kate Shugak is a top-notch investigator. Reading about all her family ties in the Aleut community added depth to the character and all the books in this series. You want to find out what's happening in Kate's life, within her community, as well as investigating the cases "with her". Dana Stabenow is a top notch writer!


message 40: by M.L. (new)

M.L. | 365 comments I love Mutt, too! It was interesting how the huskies deferred to Mutt who is part/half wolf. The huskies were tethered but would still be a pack (tame pack of course) and were snarling and barking, but one sharp bark from Mutt and they quieted. I'm always interested in details like this!


message 41: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill Kimiko wrote: "I've read this book many years ago and have purchased and read every one in the series and now I"m also reading the Liam Campbell series. I love the full descriptions of Alaska. Having never been t..."

I like a good mystery but I really enjoy one that is more than just a mystery, one that explores the area, the people, the families, even the food. I liked the first book and its intro to Kate and where she lives. I'm hoping the follow-on books provide even more details about her and her life.


message 42: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill M.L. wrote: "I love Mutt, too! It was interesting how the huskies deferred to Mutt who is part/half wolf. The huskies were tethered but would still be a pack (tame pack of course) and were snarling and barking,..."

I found that interesting too. Mutt is a female. Are they dominant? Maybe it's the part wolf?


Tone  | 318 comments Bill wrote: "Tone wrote: "Same here, Carol. I also think it's great to learn about other cultures and places that I most likely will never visit in real life. And it sounds cold indeed. We are used to chilly wi..."

I live in Oslo, in the south-eastern part of Norway. True, the winters here are not as cold as in other parts of the country. Even though - and thanks to the Gulf Stream - we don't have to endure this terrible cold that Dana Stabenow so vividly describes.


Carol (carolmn) | 7 comments Oslo is another place that I’ve explored through reading, Tone. I’m a big Harry Hole fan!


Thomas (tom471) | 1602 comments My wife and I went to Norway in 2009. We took Hurtiigruten r/t Bergen- Kirkenes-Bergen and recommend it. Oslo is on our wish list.


Tone  | 318 comments Carol wrote: "Oslo is another place that I’ve explored through reading, Tone. I’m a big Harry Hole fan!"
Yes, Oslo is almost like an extra character in the books, isn't it? By the way, some of the Snowman scenes were filmed in the park where I walk my dog.


Tone  | 318 comments Thomas wrote: "My wife and I went to Norway in 2009. We took Hurtiigruten r/t Bergen- Kirkenes-Bergen and recommend it. Oslo is on our wish list."
I'm glad you enjoyed the voyage, Thomas. Hope that the two of you will come to Oslo someday as well.


message 48: by M.L. (new)

M.L. | 365 comments Bill wrote: "M.L. wrote: "I love Mutt, too! It was interesting how the huskies deferred to Mutt who is part/half wolf. The huskies were tethered but would still be a pack (tame pack of course) and were snarling..."

I imagine it's the part wolf that makes her dominant, but that's a guess on my part. Cesar Millan who famously roller-bladed with 30 unleashed dogs following him, said if you control the leader you control the pack. So the dogs who deferred to Mutt would be following the lead of their Alpha, which would make Mutt the Alpha in that situation. I don't know if the fact they were tied up changed anything in the way of pecking orders but it's interesting. I also wondered if they had been roaming around what would happen, but they seemed pretty tame. I wouldn't want to surprise them though or Mutt either.


message 49: by Bill (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill M.L. wrote: "Bill wrote: "M.L. wrote: "I love Mutt, too! It was interesting how the huskies deferred to Mutt who is part/half wolf. The huskies were tethered but would still be a pack (tame pack of course) and ..."

I wouldn't want to surprise them either.. I agree that Mutt seems to be the Alpha. She is a great character.


Chris | 263 comments For those who loved Mutt, you will certainly enjoy the second in the series!!


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