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All Things Michigan

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Cool summer reminds me of the novel, A Stolen Season by Steve Hamilton

Andrew Norton

Okay, so after a week and a half of summer weather we are back to the 60s and low 70s for a few days. This really reminds me of a book I read by Steve Hamilton called “A Stolen Season.” It's a mystery book set in Michigan's Upper Peninsula and the title speaks of a summer so cold it felt like someone stole the summer season.

A Stolen Season - Steve Hamilton

If you enjoy reading mysteries and you haven't yet stumbled upon Steve Hamilton, do yourself a favor and pick up this book or any of his other books featuring the Alex McKnight character. All of the Alex McKnight books are set in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Paradise, Michigan to be exact. At least that's the hometown for Alex. "A Stolen Season" was published in 2007 and is the most recent Alex McKnight novel.

Alex and his friend, Leon Prudell, rescue a trio of men from a boating accident on Lake Superior only to have the rescued men accuse them of stealing a lock box from their sinking boat. This opens up a can of worms that leads to Alex investigating the traffic of prescription pain meds from the Bay Mills Indian Reservation and the dangers Alex faces that eventually meet in a twisting and turning end.

Alex's travels in his mysteries take him all across the U.P. And occasionally down to his former hometown of Detroit where he served as a cop before getting shot in the line of duty. He still carries that bullet as it is lodged dangerously close to his heart. Too close for surgery to remove it.

There are seven Alex McKnight books with another one currently in the works. Steve Hamilton really captures the essence of the Upper Peninsula in his books. The beauty, wonderful people, and harsh elements are laid out for you in a way that makes you feel like you are right there. I would say that the Upper Peninsula itself is a character in each of the Alex McKnight books. A number of times McKnight battles the elements in addition to his foes in the stories.

Steve Hamilton had his novel Winter of the Wolf Moon honored by placement on the annual Michigan Notable Books list in 2000. The list honors the top 20 fiction and non-fiction titles that either take place in Michigan, are about Michigan, or were written by someone from Michigan. View the most recent lists of Michigan Notable Books. In 2006 Steve Hamilton won the Michigan Author award based on his “contributions to literature, based on an outstanding published body of work.”

Here's the complete list of the seven Alex McKnight mystery novels:

  1. A Cold Day in Paradise
  2. Winter of the Wolf Moon
  3. The Hunting Wind
  4. North of Nowhere
  5. Blood is the Sky
  6. Ice Run
  7. A Stolen Season