Posted in 5 paws, mystery, Review on March 8, 2014

Zero degree murder


Search and rescue expert Gracie Kinkaid risks her life on a daily basis to save strangers. But going up against a coldhearted murderer is one kind of danger she’s not prepared for…

As a volunteer for Timber Creek Search and Rescue, missing out on holiday festivities is nothing new to Gracie. After all, disasters don’t stop happening because of a cooked turkey. So when Gracie is called out on Thanksgiving for four hikers missing in the wilderness of Southern California, she packs up her gear and heads out to find them.

The mission quickly goes from routine to deadly. An early season blizzard sets in. The one missing person the team does find, famous actor Rob Christian, remembers being attacked by someone else on the trail, someone trying to kill him. And Gracie’s partner leaves to get backup, taking the radio—their only link to the outside world—with him.

Alone in the mountains, Gracie will have to use all her expertise to keep Rob alive. But with an unknown killer lurking somewhere in the dark, even that might not be enough to save them.


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I went into this book thinking it was a cozy…but it is not! But don’t let that stop you from picking this book up. It was really good just a little “heavier” than a traditional cozy. Plus you find out who the bad guy is right up front (or pretty close to the beginning) but you don’t know why until the end. The characters are interesting and it is fascinating to learn about search and rescue and what is involved/how they operate/etc.  There are some moments where I found myself on the edge of my seat wondering what was going to happen next.

Grace is a strong character and she learns a bit more about herself and learns to trust a little bit.  Rob also learns something about himself and that maybe he is meant to do more.

The cover says this is the first in a new series so I’m curious as to how this will be followed up!

We enjoyed this book so much we are giving it 5 paws!


About the Author

How far would you go to save the life of a stranger? Jump out of a helicopter into four feet of snow? Sleep outside in the winter? Dangle on a rope over the edge of a cliff?

M.L. Rowland has done all of these things and more, all in the line of service as a mountain Search and Rescue volunteer. During her twelve years on Search and Rescue, Rowland participated in hundreds of search and rescue missions and trainings, including technical ropes rescues, helicopter insertions and evacuations, and searches for lost children, hikers, snowboarders, mountain bikers and criminal evidence, in alpine, desert and urban environments. She served as the team’s Training Officer and participated in community events and public speaking engagements. Trained in land navigation, and desert and winter survival, including avalanche awareness and self-arrest, she holds a certification in tracking from the State of California. Rowland also served as a member and on the Board of a Colorado County Sheriff’s Department All-Hazards Incident Management Team (IMT) which manages local search and rescue operations, brush and wildfires, planned community events and other critical incidents.

Rowland is an avid political activist, naturalist and environmentalist. She lives with her husband, Mark, and their chocolate lab, Molly, at the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains in south-central Colorado.

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