Hooked on a series…

A Night Too Dark by Dana Stabenow
When I saw that this is the 17th book in the Kate Shugak mystery series, I was surprised and a little bit concerned that I may have spent about approximately 1/10 of my life reading Dana Stabenow books. How do these things happen?
But really, it’s to Stabenow’s credit that I’ve stuck with her all this time. Sue Grafton is the only other similarly-prolific mystery writer whose books I still crave. At least the only one who comes immediately to mind. Earlene Fowler has written nearly enough to be in that group, too.
Anyway, back to A Night Too Dark. I’ve been feeling fussy about books lately (lately?!) and for the first 50 pages or so, I wondered if this one was going to pull me in the way the others have done.
The first part of the book sets up changes that have begun to take place in the Park where Kate Shugak lives, and I was not enjoying reading about it. For me, part of the appeal of this series is the remote Alaska location and its differences from my little everyday life. Like Kate, I’m not crazy about it getting modernized and commercialized.
But once that background was in place, the book took off. Also, that’s about when people started dying, so that’ll pick up the pace in any book, right?
We mystery readers are a morbid lot. No doubt about it.
But actually the thing that keeps me reading this series is the cast of characters. They’re quirky, they’re a little bit Northern Exposure, and still they’re believable.