Iron Lake, published in 1998, is the debut book introducing Cork O’Connor. Cork is an ex-police officer and former sheriff of Aurora, Minnesota where he still resides. He is down on his luck, feeling somewhat disgraced after losing his job and struggling in his marriage. When he discovers that the local judge’s suicide may be a murder, in conjunction with the disappearance of a young Eagle Scout, he can’t stop himself from investigating, despite outcry from local authorities. Cork also senses that some of the town officials aren’t being entirely candid, which results in more obstacles as he takes on the case. The 17th novel in this popular mystery series starring Cork O’Connor is scheduled for publication later this year.
Ordinary Grace is a coming of age story told by 13-year-old Frank Drum, in small town New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The summer is off to an ominous start when one of Frank’s classmates, Bobby Cole, is found dead on the railroad tracks. Was it a murder, accident or suicide? Frank is part of a typical family. His best friend is his younger outcast brother Jake, best known for his stuttering. Older sister Ariel is graduating high school and is a promising musician. Their mother has roots in the community, but is not the idealistic housewife or mom. Their father is a respected minister who presides services at three churches every Sunday. Unusual events take place that summer which result in Frank growing up quickly. He gets into typical adolescent situations, such as hanging out on the railroad tracks or antagonizing the local older bully by the river. But more disappearances and deaths will follow the one of Bobby Cole, and Frank will feel a need for answers. As he finds himself involved in some of the mysteries which unfold, Frank becomes a man over the summer. This novel is beautifully written with a fitting title.
William Kent Krueger is part of this year’s annual Books in Bloom author line-up. He will present at the Eagle Public Library for a free Meet the Author event at noon on Friday, May 4th. He will also be at Books in Bloom on Saturday, May 5th. He will be joined by fellow authors Marisa de los Santos and Ausma Zehanat Khan.