Written by C.J. Box
Review written by Ayo Onatade
Ayo Onatade is an avid reader of crime and mystery fiction. She has been writing reviews, interviews and articles on the subject for the last 12 years; with an eclectic taste from historical to hardboiled, short stories and noir films
Released: 1st February 2011
In Open Season we see Joe Pickett just starting his job and it does not go very well. He is earnest and wants to do the right thing, but things don’t go as planned. The body of a man who earlier got the better of Joe has been found dead in Joe’s backyard. However, the Sherriff and his cronies have left Joe out of the loop much to his annoyance especially since the event has had a major effect on his young daughter. There is a possibility that she may have seen something. Joe soon finds himself involved in the investigation when he is needed to trek to an isolated campsite.
Pickett is an unlikely law enforcement officer. A game warden his job is to look after the region surrounding the small town of Twelve Sleep. This involves keeping an eye on the various inhabitants that and ensuring that the hunters are not shooting out of season, with the wrong equipment or in fact hunting too many of the animals. He does not earn enough and quite frankly he spends far more time on his job than it warrants, but it is clear that he loves and enjoys being outdoors
Open Season is certainly a fast-paced novel and also very descriptive and one can easily get the feeling from reading Open Season that you are not too far from the wilderness. There is also evidently a lot of passion in Joe. It also makes him have a serious lapse of judgement, which could have had a horrific result. The novel has a strong but not too over-powering Western flavour that delves into a fascinating subject matter with ease. The author’s writing is confident and easy going and along with his plotting which is effortless he still manages to draw the reader in and keep the suspense moving along.
What does come across in the book is the fact that both the author and the character have a passion for the outdoors. We see both points of views, from that of conservationists who would like things to be left as they should and run wild and of the hunters who see the land as a way of making a living. Whilst it was not too difficult to work out the ending it did not detract from the enjoyment of the novel. Joe Pickett is certainly a character to watch and enjoy.