A Blog for Mystery Lovers

Just finished “Endangered Species” by Nevada Barr (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1997), one of the early Anna Pigeon, park ranger, series. I didn’t like this book nearly as well as I did her recent entry, “13-1/2”, which I reviewed last month (I loved that one, by the way), but it held my interest long enough to finish the book.

In this one, Anna is doing a short stint on fire presuppression duty at Cumberland Island National Seashore off the coast of Georgia when a small plane crashes on the island.  The investigation reveals suspicions about the crash and about several of the island inhabitants, including her co-workers, and Anna decides she must get to the bottom of things, putting herself and her career in danger, of course.

Now I am sure Cumberland Island must be quite beautiful and historic, and the author includes copious amounts of description, but it appears to be home to way too many chiggers and ticks for me to ever consider visiting there.  I’m sure it was not Ms. Barr’s intention to turn off the reader in this fashion, but I was sufficiently grossed out.  I also had trouble empathizing with Ms. Pigeon’s character.  I never got the feeling I completely understood her emotions, especially in regards to her relationship with her boyfriend, Frederick, and I can’t quite relate to her nude outdoor excursions either.

But the plot was fairly interesting, and the book is worth a read.

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Comments on: "“Endangered Species” by Nevada Barr" (4)

  1. I actually like Barr’s series books more than 13 1/2. Maybe it’s because I read them first.

    • Carol,
      That could very well be the reason. I can think of a few instances where my favorite book is the author’s first, which I read first. Some of the later books then proved disappointing, perhaps because their style evolved into something different from the original that didn’t touch me as much.
      When I get a chance I’ll be reading more of the Barr series because I like the different National Park locations- a great idea for a series!
      Thanks for the comment,
      Bev

  2. Hi Beverly-
    Good review – I have not read 13 1/2 myself yet: does your comment mean that mean that 13 1/2 is not an Anna Pigeon book?

    I am working my way through the Anna Pigeon series in order. I really prefer to start any book knowing as little as possible about it, but if 13 1/2 is not related then I’ll read your review :).

    Back to the current review – IMO Endangered Species is not the best Anna Pigeon book I’ve read, but it was the best of the first five, if you follow me. I’m finding that the books are improving a bit each time.

    By the time you get to book 8, Deep South, it seems like Nevada has gotten a good hold on Anna as a character, the locations are continuing to co-star, and some of the mysteries are very nicely constructed.

    • Hi Sandy,
      That’s correct – 13-1/2 is a stand-alone, not an Anna Pigeon series, and I really liked it a lot.
      Endangered Species is the first Anna Pigeon book I’ve read, but I’m going to try another as soon as I get a chance. I do love the concept of the National Park settings, especially if it’s a park I’ve visited – makes the setting more vivid for me.
      Thanks for the comment,
      Bev

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