Thursday, August 25, 2011

Review: Murder in the Chilcotin by Roy Innes

  • Paperback: 315 pages
  • Publisher: Newest Publishers (October 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1897126697
  • ISBN-13: 978-1897126691

Product Description


The third book in Roy Innes' mystery series sends RCMP Inspector Coswell and the newly promoted Sergeant Blakemore to the district of West Caribou in British Columbia, where the murder of a neophyte Mountie, the son of a local rancher, threatens to ignite racial conflicts that have been simmering in the region ever since 1885, when five First Nations men were hanged for treason. 

About the Author


ROY INNES is a retired eye physician and surgeon whose penchant for the arts, buried for years in the world of science, was rekindled upon retirement. His first novel, Murder in the Monashees, was released in 2005; Inspector Coswell’s exploits continued in 2008 with West End Murders. Innes is an avid hunter, a lover of classical music, and, despite his skinny frame, a gourmand. He lives on British Columbia’s lush Gabriola Island with his wife Barrie and his daughter’s cat.

My Review

Impressive crime thriller/police procedural from Roy Innes.  Innes has a wonderful insight into current and past First Nations issues in British Columbia.  He brings his insight to this well written and very enjoyable and esy to read novel that is the third in his series featuring RCMP Inspector Coswell and  Sergeant Blakemore.

There are not too many novels set in British Columbia so this series is a wonderful treat.  The Cariboo Chilcotin region of BC is incredibly beautiful.  Rolling hills are the setting for ranches, lakes full of fish have fishing lodges and camps for every price range, wildlife abounds and the rugged mountains are enchanting.  This region also is home to a large number of First Nations peoples who still harbour resentments toward the descendants of settlers who seemingly took over their region and forced their laws upon them.  Innes also touches on the scourge of the pine beetle that has plagued and decimated BC's forests.

It is in this fascinating landscape that the Murder in the Chilcotin is set.  The First Nations people who live in Anahim Lake are set against the ranchers and the people of William's Lake (Willy's Pond) right off the bat with the murder of an RCMP officer on native land.  As the bodies begin to pile up Coswell, Blakemore and newly deputized local native Richard Delorme realize that vengeance runs deep and the past lives on in the Chilcotin. Innes is obviously very familiar with the area and its issues.  There is hunting, tree harvesters, tree planters, hippies, and hidden marijuana crops.

Great writing and a great story make this a great read.  As authors such as Tony Hillerman exposed the realities of the Navaho Reservation to mystery readers, Roy Innes has brought the Anahim Ulkatcho Reserve to life for his readers.  Highly recommend this excellent mystery crime novel!

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