William Kent Krueger won't kill off Cork O'Connor

For fans of William Kent Krueger’s Cork O’Connor mystery series – and I’m one of them – Krueger announced big news on his website this month. He won’t retire Cork as he said he would a year and a half ago.

Krueger wanted time to write a big stand-alone thriller that would get him a movie contract. To get that time, he said back then, Cork had to go, that Heaven’s Keep, his ninth book in the series published last year, was his last.

Said Krueger this month, “Two things happened. First, the economy went south and I realized that Cork’s been doing a pretty good job of helping me pay the mortgage. And second, I had an idea for another book in the series, one that just knocked my socks off.”

That idea puts Cork in Minnesota’s Iron Range.

Authorities select an abandoned iron mine for a nuclear waste burial site. Residents of the area don’t want radioactive stuff in their backyard and may do something about it, so Cork is called in as a security consultant. The first day on the job he finds six bodies in a poorly hidden chamber in the mine – five of the bodies dead for 40 years, the sixth killed only a week ago. Forensics determines a bullet from Cork’s father’s pistol killed the last of the 40-year-old bodies. Liam O’Connor – Cork’s father – was the Tamarack County sheriff at the time. He died in a shooting some years later.

A bullet from the senior O’Connor’s pistol also killed the most recent body, the gun now owned by Cork.

Vermillion Drift is finished and at the publisher’s. We all get to read it in September when the book comes out.

Tomorrow: A banker gets his

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