Tracking The Beast
by Henry Kisor
Review by Mel Jacob
Five Star Hardcover ISBN/ITEM#: 9781432831158
Date: 16 December 2015 List Price $25.95 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Specializing in the adventures of a county sheriff in Michigan's sparsely populated Upper Peninsula, Henry Kisor takes the reader on a hunt for a child molester and murderer. Tracking the Beast pits Porcupine County Sheriff Steve Martinez against a clever criminal, the FBI, and time.
When a railroad hopper car once stored on a siding in Porcupine County, is found to contain the remains of a child, Steve Martinez, the county sheriff, is contacted. He investigates other railroad cars on the Rockville siding and finds the remains of another child and the intact body of a dead Mexican male. Because children are involved, the FBI immediately takes over the case.
The case intrigues Martinez, his staff, and a state trooper. Martinez's dogged pursuit of a potential suspect takes him on an odyssey around Lake Superior with his love Ginny Fitzgerald. Once into Canada, they also acquire the company of two Canadian police officers. Suspicious at first, the Canadians soon become allies as they follow the suspect's odd behavior.
Martinez finds clues in odd places. An elderly woman was dumped sans clothing into a hopper car some 30 years earlier and the remains of another man are also found in a hopper car. Steve looks for ways to link these with recent killings and sees connections in the history of the various railroad companies along with the ownership and storage of the hopper cars.
Gradually the various bits of information lead Steve to one man. However, he needs more than circumstantial information and his gut feelings. Somehow, he must catch the killer in action. Meanwhile he gets help from colleagues in other states and Canada. The FBI remains silent, but one agent supplies Steve with important leads.
An establish writer, Kisor spins an interesting tale and keeps the pages turning without unneeded violence. The characters are complex and believable and the reader will root for Steve and the local lawmen trying to solve a puzzle that has stumped the FBI. Other mysteries by Kisor include Season's Revenge, A Venture into Murder, Cache of Corpses, and Hang Fire.