Title: Tracking Game by Margaret Mizushima
Timber Creek K-9 Mystery Series Book Five
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 288 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Two brutal murders, a menacing band of poachers, and a fearsome creature on the loose in the mountains plunge Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner Robo into a sinister vortex.
An explosion outside a community dance sends Mattie Cobb and Cole Walker reeling into the night, where they discover a burning van and beside it the body of outfitter Nate Fletcher. But the explosion didn’t kill Nate–it was two gunshots to the heart.
The investigation leads them to the home of rancher Doyle Redman, whose daughter is Nate’s widow, and the object of one of their suspect’s affection. But before they can make an arrest, they receive an emergency call from a man who’s been shot in the mountains. Mattie and Robo rush to the scene, only to be confronted by the ominous growl of a wild predator.
As new players emerge on the scene, Mattie begins to understand the true danger that’s enveloping Timber Creek. They journey into the cold, misty mountains to track the animal–but discover something even more deadly in Tracking Game, the fifth installment in Margaret Mizushima’s Timber Creek K-9 mysteries.
Tracking Game by Margaret Mizushima is an enthralling mystery with a fantastic cast of characters. Although this newest release is the fifth installment in the Timber Creek K-9 Mystery series, it can be read as a standalone. However, I highly recommend the previous novels in the series.
Deputy Mattie Cobb and veterinarian Cole Walker’s private relationship goes public when they attend a town dance together. But their evening plans are interrupted by a nearby explosion. Upon arriving at the scene, they discover a burning vehicle, a dead body and an injured friend and his wife. Cole’s friends Leslie and Garrett Hartman have had a difficult year and both he and Mattie are worried about Garrett’s injuries. Garrett’s attempt to save murder victim Nate Fletcher prevents important evidence from going up in flames. Mattie quickly brings her K-9 partner Robo to the scene where he soon sniffs out invaluable evidence. But will their discoveries lead them to the killer?
Mattie is making progress with coming to terms with her troubled childhood. She continues to wrestle with trust issues and she remains a little wary of taking her relationship with Cole to the next level. Mattie pushes aside her personal demons as she and Robo become embroiled in the investigation into Nate’s murder.
Mattie, Chief Deputy Brody and Detective Stella Losasso put in long hours trying to unmask Nate’s killer. At first glance, Nate appears to be an unlikely victim but the evidence soon paints a different picture of the outfitter. Mattie and Stella follow their unexpected leads but they are frustrated by their lack of progress. When another person connected to the case is murdered, Mattie and the rest of the team are soon in a race against time to catch the murderer.
Tracking Game is a fast-paced mystery that is quite intriguing. Mattie continues to grow and heal as she becomes seriously entangled with Cole and his daughters. The investigation is quite fascinating and the case takes an very shocking turn. Margaret Mizushima brings the mystery to a tension-filled conclusion.
While the mystery element is completely wrapped up, the novel abruptly ends with a cliff-hanger personal discovery. Readers will be impatiently awaiting the next release in the Timber Creek K-9 Mystery series.