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Book Notes | ‘Fox Creek’

January 19, 2024, at 2pm

Fox Creek is the 19th book in the Cork O’Connor mystery series by William Kent Krueger. Krueger makes his home in St. Paul. His Cork O’Connor books are set in the Northwoods of Minnesota. The main character, Cork O’Connor, is a man of mixed heritage—Irish and Ojibwe. When asked how he conceived of this character, Krueger said, “If I created a character of mixed heritage in this setting, a man who had a foot in two different cultures, white and Ojibwe, I would mirror the conflict of their cultures in all his thinking and his being.”

In Fox Creek, the conflict is between Native and white’s use of natural resources in both the U.S. and Canada. Henry Meloux, a consistent character in O’Connor books, is an ancient Ojibwe healer. When Dolores Morrison seeks out Meloux for his spiritual help, she brings dark forces with her. Henry takes her and his niece Rainy (Cork’s wife) deep into the Boundary Waters, a location he knows deeply, to keep them from the hunters searching for Delores. He uses his knowledge he gained over the last century to outmaneuver those tracking them through snowstorms, rocky terrain, bogs, and marshes. One of the hunters is a Native tracker who pits his wits against those of Henry.

Cork O’Connor begins his own quest to identify the hunters and their reasons for hunting Dolores. He goes into the Boundary Waters to track those after Henry, Dolores, and Rainy. He is supported by his family, Dolores’s family, and local police. The reasons behind the search for Dolores aren’t revealed until the end of the book. As with O’Connor’s other books, readers learn about Northern Minnesota, Ojibwe culture, and history from this story.

The book was well received by UMRA Book Club members. Everyone seemed to like the characters, particularly the wise Henry Meloux. Someone said it was the characters that held her interest.   

Readers also liked the spiritual side of the story—the information on Native American culture that the author weaves into all his stories. One person commented on how the book brings you in touch with nature, and how that is missing in our lives. Most of the club members have read other books in the O’Connor series.

—Reviewed by Kathy Cramer and Rebecca Anderson, UMRA Book Club I




Book Club I in January

Fri, Jan 19 2024, 2pm

Event to be held via Zoom.

Becky Anderson will lead the discussion of Fox Creek by William Kent Krueger when the UMRA Book Club meets via Zoom at 2 p.m. on Friday, January 19. 

First published in 2022, this is the 19th book in Krueger’s bestselling Cork O’Connor mystery series. The story takes place almost exclusively in the Boundary Waters of Minnesota. 

Fox Creek has been praised as “another gripping and richly told addition to a masterful series.”

Email Pat Tollefson for more information. 

Go to Book Notes to read summaries of the book club’s discussions.

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