Winter Prey By John Sandford
Written in 1993, Winter Prey is one of the earliest of the John Sandford thrillers. A riveting story featuring the character of Lucan Davenport, it is set in North Wisconsin in icy, blizzard conditions that set the scene for the extremely dark plot which ensues.
The villain is a particularly nasty character called the Ice Man who goes on a killing spree in order to eliminate damaging evidence that could convict him of being a child predator.
This begins with the murder of a local family who have inadvertently come into contact with a damning photograph of the killer. The home of the family is set alight in an effort to burn the evidence, but as the killer remains uncertain as to whether he has eliminated all threats, other potential witnesses are also attacked or killed. Lucas Davenport works with the local police in a race against time to pin down the elusive evidence that will identify the killer and assist in convicting him.
While it is a compelling story, it is also a violent one and for that reason may not be to everyone’s liking. However the plot is good enough for me to recommend this book as a thoroughly engrossing read.