‘LAKE OF FIRE‘ by MARK STEVENS
From page 203 of my PDF copy
Cutting through the burned-out forest on the banks of the White River, the broad plain near Meeker gave way to a narrow canyon. Devo crossed the river where it was shallow. Here at dawn, Devo realized he missed his birds—no robins, swallows, warblers, and chickadees to greet the day. Hiking through a forest scrubbed clean of its undergrowth made for easy travelling, but the lack of birds and critters was eerie.
Now it was dawn, and he would stay low. He knew they were looking. He’d walked all night, and he needed food, water, and a place to hide while the sun was up.
He plunged his head in the water, sucked in cool water until he felt like he would burst. He foraged for berries and spotted a batch of sunflowers huddled up next to a house. He circled downwind of five deer grazing in an open field and risked a half-minute in open country. He yanked one stalk from the earth, a seven-footer. Among the hundred or so available, it would never be missed. He munched on the seeds by the river bank, chewed the blossoms and the leaves, and stuffed a pocket with hunks of the plant for his next meal or a snack, if he didn’t find something better.
In this spot in the valley, roads followed both sides of the river but the one on the south bank rose higher to skirt a sprawling farm complex with a half-dozen matching out-buildings prettied up in a green-and-white theme. He had never seen a ranch spread that screamed its brand with so much authority—all the matching paint jobs. The spread might have been airlifted from horse country in Kentucky or Virginia. White wood fences chopped the undernourished riverside fields into chunks of grazing pasture. Dozens of cattle lingered in the morning calm and, further upstream, horses dotted a more open field. The rancher must have had quite the show when the fire roared through. No doubt now any scenic value he could tack on to the property’s price had dropped to zilch because the view of a forested hillside had been reduced to thousands of dead-soldier trees and scorched earth….”
The massive blaze is wiping out Allison Coil’s precious hunting grounds, and the flames have set their sights on the beautiful ranch owned by her boyfriend’s family.
Allison and longtime friend Trudy are shocked to learn that a body has been found in the fire ravaged forest—a friend who was a reclusive environmentalist with an unorthodox idea for the battle against global warming.
Along with reporter Duncan Bloom, Allison burrows into an underground group of anti-government extremists.
As they strike close to home and hurt those closest to her, Allison vows hell might not be punishment enough for this cabal of sinister fanatics.
I have now finished this book and have awarded it 4 out of 5, well deserved stars.
Ahead of my final review, I shall be sharing an excellent Guest Post, which author, Mark Stevens, has written in support of ‘Lake Of Fire’
Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Ambrosia @ ‘The Purple Booker‘
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Grab your current read.
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