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Topic: Any Nevada Barr fans out there?

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Subject: Any Nevada Barr fans out there?
Date Posted: 2/7/2012 11:01 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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I just recently read my first of her books, which I think is a newer one: "Burn" set in New Orleans (why I picked it up).

I noticed she has 18 others!!! (a little intimidating, and I read from the library which often does not have earlier series books that old).

But while I liked it, her writing style struck me a kind of....different. Maybe more wordy? More touchy-feely? I'm not sure how to describe it; most of the thrillers I read are fast-paced high action spy/military "action hero" types, where the writing is very taut.

Are her other books set out west? Any words of advice as I decide whether to take her on or not?

Date Posted: 2/7/2012 12:47 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,603
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I have read the first four or five of her books--I always read series in order, it's just one of my quirks--but I haven't read any recently. Each of her books takes place at a different National Park, and I find that aspect of them very interesting, and she gives a great sense of atmosphere and place, I think.

I am not crazy about her lead character and actually like her sister Molly better--whom she usually only talks to on the phone. I plan to pick up the series at some point, I think it's a worthwhile series, although not a favorite, and after a few I found them quite predictable and similar despite the different settings, so as long as you leave space in between each one, they should be fine. They are definitely not the fast-paced "action filled" thriller though, although usually there are a few episodes of the main character in danger type things. I know others who love her and I think her earlier books are probably available here in mass mkt paperback by the dozens or even hundreds.


Date Posted: 2/7/2012 1:16 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,452
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I just finished "A Superior Death"--the second in her series.  I'd read "Track of the Cat"--the first in the series years ago and enjoyed it as well.  Don't know why it took me so long to pick up the second one.  Cheryl is right on when she says that Nevada Barr "gives a great sense of atmosphere and place".  That's one of the things I really enjoyed about "A Superior Death".  I really got a sense of the Lake Superior area.  I'm pretty sure each of her books is set in a different National Park.

By the way--a couple great websites for determining series order of books are www.fantasticfiction.co.uk and specifically for mystery books -- www.stopyourekillingme.com .

Date Posted: 2/7/2012 2:53 PM ET
Member Since: 7/29/2008
Posts: 1,520
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I, too, read 4-5 of  the Nevada Barr books years ago...really can't tell you why I didn't keep up with them.  I was actually  thinking about trying the series again, but can't remember where I left off!!!!

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 2/7/2012 4:04 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,157
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I like her books and I think I've read them all except "Burn". I understand that one is a prequel to the rest of the series, so it's probably fine to read it first.

Date Posted: 2/7/2012 5:04 PM ET
Member Since: 1/9/2006
Posts: 760
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You know its funny that you say that about the main character Cheryl, I feel the similarly about her - don't quite like her.  I listened to several of these books on audio and felt they were ok, but haven't picked up another one in a fairly good while.

Date Posted: 2/7/2012 5:45 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,603
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Oh, Melani...I listened to ONE audio...and thought the reader was awful. I can't remember why, it was at least a few years ago now, but I really disliked the reader. In fact, I think that was the last one in the series I read, I didn't even finish and it put me off reading more, even though I had a couple of the next ones in print.


Alice J. (ASJ) - ,
Date Posted: 2/14/2012 12:37 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2009
Posts: 43,898
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I enjoy the series (I like the audio books too). They are very detailed and can be slow, and oveall similar plot other than location. I only read about 1 per year of her books.


Date Posted: 2/17/2012 10:31 AM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2006
Posts: 479
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Her latest is "The rope" - it explains how she became a Park Ranger

Date Posted: 2/18/2012 10:24 PM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2007
Posts: 2,408
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I have read several of her books over the years and generally, I enjoyed them because of their settings in various national parks. I read Winter Study a couple of years ago and really disliked it.  The main character did something that seemed so out of character that I felt really angry with Nevada Barr. The I read the one that came right after Winter Study and hated that one even more.  Completely jumped the shark for me.  So, I'm done with this series!  As I remember though, the first four or five books were not too bad even if Anna Pigeon is not a very likeable or sympathetic character.

Date Posted: 2/26/2012 9:34 AM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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LOL....I have now read 3-4 of her earlier books, and I actually do like Anna a LOT...altho she verges on being a little too perfect, even with her flaws (but I think that's just the way of writers, things have to work out a certain way).

I think her writing and plotting is just a little slower than the thrillers I usually read, but now that I'm used to it, that's OK. I love the settings, she has a great sense of place.

Barr's very newest book, now on NYTimes best-seller list, is the prequel.

"Burn," the first one of hers I read, came out before that one.