Schweigart has done it again. Northwoods is book #2 in his cryptozoology thrill ride of a series (I hear he's already hard at work on book #3). After teaming up to defeat the bloodthirsty and relentless shapeshifter in The Beast of Barcroft, Lindsay and Ben are back to tackle a nightmare that makes the Beast of Barcroft look like child's play.
A year after the incident in Barcroft, Ben and Lindsay have become best friends. A call from the wealthy cryptozoologist, Richard Severence, brings the two to the Apostle Islands off the northern coast of Wisconsin's shores of Lake Superior. Meeting up with their Ojibway friend, Alex StandingCloud, they are sent to the scene where a gruesome massacre has taken place in the northern woods. Customs and Border Patrol officer, Davis Holland, stumbled upon it one night when investigating what appeared to be an illegal entry across the border. The only clue to the origins of the bloodbath is a strange and ornately carved wooden box. Is an old Native American folktale responsible for unleashing hell on this sleepy northern town?
Northwoods is a return to form for Schweigart after the excellent The Beast of Barcroft. He uses the X-Files template in a creative and interesting way weaving Native American folklore in with a remote setting to produce a feeling of helpless isolation. Northwoods worked from me. From the interesting characters, the unique setting, and tapping into the combination of Native American legends with cryptozoology, it all adds up to a fun read that I'm looking forward to continuing in the upcoming third installment. My only knock on the story is that more background wasn't fleshed out to explain the box and the creatures, but I have a feeling that will be delved into more in the next book of the series.
4 1/2 genies in a bottle out of 5
** This book was an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
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