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Death Stalks Door County: A Dave Cubiak Door County Mystery

por Patricia Skalka

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494415,481 (3.5)1
Six deaths mar the holiday mood as summer vacationers enjoy Wisconsin's beautiful Door County peninsula. Murders, or bizarre accidents? Newly hired park ranger Dave Cubiak, a former Chicago homicide detective, assumes the worst but refuses to get involved. Grief-stricken and guilt-ridden over the loss of his wife and daughter, he's had enough of death.             Forced to confront the past, the morose Cubiak moves beyond his own heartache and starts investigating, even as a popular festival draws more people into possible danger. In a desperate search for clues, Cubiak uncovers a tangled web of greed, betrayal, bitter rivalries, and lost love beneath the peninsula's travel-brochure veneer. Befriended by several locals but unsure whom to trust or to suspect of murder, the one-time cop tracks a clever killer.             In a setting of stunning natural beauty and picturesque waterfront villages, Death Stalks Door County introduces a new detective series, "The Dave Cubiak Door County Mysteries." Finalist, Traditional Fiction 2014 Book of the Year Award, Chicago Writers Association… (mais)
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Death Stalks Door County: A Dave Cubiak Door County Mystery by Patricia Skalka is the first book in a multi book series. Published in 2004, author takes readers to the peninsula that juts out between Lake Michigan and Green Bay.

Dave Cubiak is a man living with incredible grief. His wife and daughter were killed and he knows that he is responsible for their deaths. Not directly, but indirectly, and that grief is all encompassing and wide ranging.

“He found it unsettling how quickly life returned to normal for those on the outskirts of loss. For a week after Lauren and Alexis died, he’d failed to pick up the morning newspapers from the front porch, not because he forgot but because everything commonplace seemed superfluous. His perspective had been so altered by death, he could not comprehend a world in which someone would continue to drop a daily paper at his door. He was only beginning to understand that for those not directly touched by it, death was a transient event (pages 60-61).”

The former Chicago homicide detective left the force and came up to the Door County to be a park ranger. He promised his former homicide partner he would give the job a year and he intends to uphold that promise despite the grief, the massive alcohol intake, and the ongoing annoying stupidity of others including his boss, Otto Johnson.

He wanted to leave death behind. At least, that was the plan. Then three months into the job, in late June, he hears a sharp wail nearby while out running one morning as he tried to flush the toxins from his system. He investigates and finds his boss, Park Superintendent Otto Johnson, at the base of Falcon Tower. It appears that somebody took a header off the multistory fire watch tower.

It soon becomes clear that the deceased is Lawrence Wisby. As Cubiak is forced to explain to his boss, Sheriff Halverson, and Doctor Bathard, the deceased is the brother of the man that killed his wife and daughter by driving drunk and running them down with a car. That makes him a suspect as far as the Sheriff is concerned.

An intense and highly atmospheric story, Death Stalks Door County: A Dave Cubiak Door County Mystery by Patricia Skalka is a complicated and often intense read. Grief plays a major role in the book almost to the point of an actual living and breathing character. Issues related to that aspect of the book leads to considerable backstory as well as a deep resonance with this reader. The ongoing current day mystery is complicated and far ranging and resulted in a considerable surprise when the killer was finally revealed.

Intense, complicated, and very atmospheric, Death Stalks Door County: A Dave Cubiak Door County Mystery by Patricia Skalka is a very good read.

Death Stalks Door County: A Dave Cubiak Door County Mystery
Patricia Skalka
http://www.patriciaskalka.com/
University of Wisconsin Press
https://uwpress.wisc.edu/books/5315.htm
May 2014
IISBN# 978-0299299408
Hardback eBook (eBook and paperback formats also available)
246 Pages

Material supplied by the good folks of the Dallas Library System.

Kevin R. Tipple ©2021 ( )
  kevinrtipple | Apr 26, 2021 |
Six deaths mar the holiday mood as summer vacationers enjoy Wisconsin’s beautiful Door County peninsula. Murders, or bizarre accidents? Newly hired park ranger Dave Cubiak, a former Chicago homicide detective, assumes the worst but refuses to get involved. Grief-stricken and guilt-ridden over the loss of his wife and daughter, he’s had enough of death.
Forced to confront the past, the morose Cubiak moves beyond his own heartache and starts investigating, even as a popular festival draws more people into possible danger. In a desperate search for clues, Cubiak uncovers a tangled web of greed, betrayal, bitter rivalries, and lost love beneath the peninsula’s travel-brochure veneer. Befriended by several locals but unsure whom to trust or to suspect of murder, the one-time cop tracks a clever killer. ( )
  jepeters333 | Aug 30, 2020 |
It took me a little longer than desired to get into this book, but once I did I couldn't wait to see how it ended. A very good murder mystery set close to home. (It even had a nice shout out to my aunt and cousin's current one-stop sign town!) i definitely enjoyed the book and would read the next book in the series. ( )
  startwithgivens | Mar 21, 2018 |
Great read. Promises to be the first in a series about this fictional detective. Love the Door County backdrop. Didn't figure out who the murderer was till the end. ( )
  cherybear | Dec 14, 2014 |
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Six deaths mar the holiday mood as summer vacationers enjoy Wisconsin's beautiful Door County peninsula. Murders, or bizarre accidents? Newly hired park ranger Dave Cubiak, a former Chicago homicide detective, assumes the worst but refuses to get involved. Grief-stricken and guilt-ridden over the loss of his wife and daughter, he's had enough of death.             Forced to confront the past, the morose Cubiak moves beyond his own heartache and starts investigating, even as a popular festival draws more people into possible danger. In a desperate search for clues, Cubiak uncovers a tangled web of greed, betrayal, bitter rivalries, and lost love beneath the peninsula's travel-brochure veneer. Befriended by several locals but unsure whom to trust or to suspect of murder, the one-time cop tracks a clever killer.             In a setting of stunning natural beauty and picturesque waterfront villages, Death Stalks Door County introduces a new detective series, "The Dave Cubiak Door County Mysteries." Finalist, Traditional Fiction 2014 Book of the Year Award, Chicago Writers Association

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