Lightning Strike

Atria. (Cork O’Connor, Bk. 18). Aug. 2021. 400p. ISBN 9781982128685. $27. THRILLER
This prequel to Krueger’s “Cork O’Connor” series begins in January 1989. Cork, the newly elected sheriff of Tamarack County, MN, reflects on the case that changed his relationship with his father in the summer of 1963, when Cork was 12. In ’63, his father Liam is the sheriff; when Cork finds the hanging body of Big John Manydeeds, Liam investigates. Liam is pulled between Tamarack County’s white residents, who think Manydeeds was drunk and killed himself, and the county’s Ojibwe residents, who don’t believe that Manydeeds, who was Ojibwe, died by suicide. Liam searches for logical answers, while Cork grapples with questions about death and witnesses a shadow that haunts the Lightning Strike site where Manydeeds was found. Cork, who is one-quarter Ojibwe, finds spiritual answers and provides clues to his white father, who will always be an outsider in the county. Anger is the only response for a 12-year-old when his father’s decisions seem to put community before family.
VERDICT This sensitive, moving prequel introduces and draws readers into the series. Krueger (Ordinary Grace; This Tender Land) has written another perceptive coming-of-age novel, the poignant story of a father and son trying to understand each other. It provides Cork O’Connor’s backstory for those who haven’t read the series.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing