Snowblind II: The Killing Grounds by Michael McBride

snowblind-2The original Snowblind came out in late 2012 and was one of the best novellas I’d read. Now, Michael McBride is back with a follow up, Snowblind II: The Killing Grounds. You can read my Snowblind review.

There are some references to the original story and a character who made a brief but critical appearance at the end. However, the important information is recapped so you can go into this blind and not be lost.

Seven years ago, five students went missing on a skiing trip in the mountains of Colorado, never to be heard from again. Until now. John Avery never gave up looking for the love of his life, Michelle, even when her parents did. Now with the discovery of a video camera in the wilderness, Avery and local law enforcement try to discover what happened when they disappeared.

Avery is an interesting man. He is so driven over the years to try to find Michelle, spending all his time and money on the task, and getting nowhere but still keeping hope alive. His dedication ensures the reader’s empathy, making him a strong character and making you really invested in the story. The rest of the search party are all well developed: a conservation biologist, a sheriff, a tech-whiz, and a search and rescue expert. You have a strong sense of who’s who and they are all very much trapped in the same predicament. It’s not long before they are released one by one from their predicament through gory methods.

The book has a great setting – the frozen landscape – isolated, inhospitable, and fluctuating. It’s very much a character too. This is a welcome sequel and an enjoyable story. If you’ve read the first book already, you’ll notice that it lacks some of the suspense of the original story, but it’s action packed as our protagonists are hunted from the shadows. I’d love to see the lore expanded with a third book. The events in Snowblind II would certainly play on my mind on a quiet night if I lived in a part of the world with a similarly snowy winter landscape. I think with the sprinkle of snow we get in south Louisiana once every five years, I’ll be feeling pretty safe. I’m not sure about the rest of you though…

8/10

Pick up a copy here: http://amzn.to/1VONFOq

Book Cover Blurb:

There are some places man was never meant to go.

For the past seven years, John Avery has been combing the wilderness for any sign of his missing girlfriend, who set out upon the ski trip of a lifetime and was never seen again.

Regions utterly isolated by geography and time.

The discovery of a video camera prompts Sheriff Wayne Dayton to dispatch a search party into one of the most remote areas of the Rockies in hopes of learning her fate.

Where few species can survive.

When a freak blizzard strikes, they find themselves wandering blindly into the killing grounds of a predator they can’t even see.