C.J. Box’s Joe Pickett series is a very popular mystery series, but Box has also written stand-alone novels, including Back of Beyond and Blue Heaven. Police from California are drawn to living in Idaho after retirement, so much so that it is known as Blue Heaven. A group of retired policemen are arguing in a wooded area when Annie and William, children who are heading to a creek to go fishing, witness the men shoot and kill one of the group. One of the men sees them and the children run for their lives. They manage to evade the killers and hide in a barn owned by rancher Jess Rawlins. Jess isn’t sure whether to believe their story, but hides them from search parties and the killer until he investigates. What he uncovers goes beyond their small town and involves conspiracies, bank robbery and murder. Box excels at evoking a stong sense of place in his novels–in this story his descriptions of the dark, damp forests filled with underbrush and dripping with rain add to the sense of suspense in the story line. Box has crafted a gripping thriller filled with action and suspense–a powerful novel about character, integrity and trust.