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In the fifth book in the Mike Bowditch series, the Maine game warden has resigned his position following a family tragedy and is working as a fishing guide in the North Woods. But when his mentor Sgt. Kathy Frost is forced to kill a troubled war veteran in an apparent case of "suicide by cop," he begins having second thoughts about his decision.
Now Kathy finds herself the target of an official inquiry and outrage from the the dead soldier's platoon mates. When the sergeant is shot outside her farmhouse, Mike joins the hunt to find the sniper responsible. To do so, the ex-warden must plunge into his friend's secret past—even as a beautiful woman from Mike's own past returns, throwing into jeopardy his tentative romance with wildlife biologist Stacey Stevens.
As Kathy Frost lies on the brink of death and a dangerous shooter stalks the apple orchards and blueberry barrens of central Maine, Bowditch is forced to confront the choices he has made and determine, once and for all, the kind of man he truly is.
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READ A FREE MIKE BOWDITCH SHORT STORY
Retired Maine Warden Pilot Charley Stevens is one of the most popular characters in the Mike Bowditch series. So I thought it might be fun to write a short story about his first year as a warden in the 1970s.
The result is "The Bear Trap," about Charley's battle of wits with a mysterious "North Woods Hermit," which you can now read for free on the Criminal Element website. Here is the opening paragraph:
The wind moved across the surface of the lake like breath upon a mirror. In the stern of the canoe Charley Stevens dipped a paddle to bring us around again over a submerged field of weeds. We were fishing for early-season pike. Charley was a retired Maine game warden—thirty years in the service—and the best woodsman I’d ever met.
And when you're done with the story, you can read two interviews I did with the Bangor Daily News about the inspiration for "The Bear Trap" and for my forthcoming novel, The Bone Orchard.