Rice takes his job seriously. He’s taken the assignment of being the caretaker of the Turk Mountain Preserve for the isolation and the security that he hopes he will find up in the mountain ranges. He’s content doing physical labor and making his rounds, until a mushroom hunter finds his way onto the property. This hunter shows Rice the remains of the bear. Killed illegally on the protected property, Rice sets off on a mission to find the individual(s) responsible for this criminal act. Rice is an outsider to the area and he soon realizes, that he’s not welcomed nor will the locals willing give up information to help him out. It’s not just him either, the previous caretaker’s experienced problems also. As Rice tracks down these illegal hunters, his efforts get mingled with his past and Rice takes to the great outdoors.
I enjoyed the author’s writing, I felt as if I was in the mountains with the brush and the terrain right in front of me. It was entertaining when Rice was living outdoors, with mixed emotions I read, as Rice experienced a variety of incidents. When Rice put on his undercover suit, I had to laugh but boy, he knew his stuff and he blended right in. This was a great novel, sometimes taking on a relaxed feeling as Rice got a feel for the world around him and other times it was exciting as individuals started to invade his space. I enjoyed it.