A Taint in the Blood : Kate Shugak

  • by Dana Stabenow
  • Narrated by Marguerite Gavin
  • Series: Kate Shugak
  • 9 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In Dana Stabenow's strongest novel to date, Aleutian P.I. Kate Shugak is hired by Charlotte Mauravieff to clear her mother's name. Twenty years ago, her mother was convicted of setting fire to the family home and killing one of her two sons, both inside the house at the time. Though the mother herself had accepted the life sentence without protest, Charlotte has always believed in her innocence. But when Kate begins the investigation, she soon discovers that the terminally ill mother isn't the only one refusing to cooperate and confront the past. To find the truth Kate must unearth 20 years of secrets, regret, and murder within one of Alaska's most powerful families.

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What the Critics Say

"A Taint in the Blood, like its predecessors, can be read on two levels - as a cleverly-executed thriller with an intriguing protagonist or as a fascinating exploration of an exotic society with its own unique culture. Either way, you can't lose." (San Diego Union-Tribune)
"Among the best in a consistently strong series. Along with the series' typical appealing features - Kate's erotically charged romantic life with Trooper Jim Chopin; delightful character sketches of various residents of the Alaskan bush, including a dog named Mutt; and, of course, the vivid rendering of the Alaskan landscape - Stabenow adds a new element this time: setting the case in Anchorage allows her to portray Kate dealing with life in the city and to consider Alaskan history outside the backcountry." (Booklist)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

No taint in this story

This book is a departure for Kate Shugak -- she is hired by a wealthy woman to free her mother from prison due to a conviction on the arson murder of her eldest son over 30 years before. Kate reluctantly accepts the case, which takes her to Anchorage with Jim Chopin on her heels.

This is a good mystery and it is interesting to see Kate mingling with high society; but this novel does suffer from departure from the Park and its denizens. Also, there is a lot more sex in this novel than in previous novels, which might be a bit off-putting to some fans.

I found the mystery intriguing and this novel a difficult one to which to stop listening. Highly recommend.

As usual, Gavin delivers an excellent performance.
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- Tracey "I am a voracious reader (average about 4-5 Audible books a week, in addition to those I "eyeball".) I have been hooked on recorded books since the time of cassettes/CDs and was thrilled when I became an Audible member in 2007. I find reader reviews good guides to spending my credits, so have finally decided to write a few (although, I would rather be reading!)"

The good: Jim; The bad: no Bobby & little Alaska.

I enjoyed the storyline involving Jim. Kate is rejoining life and enjoying herself again - 2 years after losing Jack. Her flirtation with Jim - her enjoyment of the playfulness of their sex life - is a fun part of this book. It allows the reader to escape the grief that has been so integral to the story for several books.

However, the story here takes place in Anchorage. This means that Bobby is completely absent, as is the character of Alaska. My favorite part of this series is its glimpses into the culture of Alaska. I love learning about life in the 49th state, especially among some of the "park rats". I love examining the Aleut culture, I love the craziness brought to life due to the wildlife, and I love the personalities of the supporting cast. All of that was missing in this book and that was a big disappointment for me.
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- Kelly "Reading allows me to travel through time; to visit the world's unique and stunning places. To become somebody I am not... It is glorious."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-16-2007
  • Publisher: Books on Tape