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Bookreporter Talks To

Aug 24, 2021

William Kent Krueger joins Carol Fitzgerald to discuss his newest novel, Lightning Strike, which is a prequel to his Cork O'Connor series. He is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of Ordinary Grace, This Tender Land, 18 Cork O'Connor novels, and more.

Lightning Strike tells the story of 12-year-old Cork O'Connor in his home town of Aurora, Minnesota. When Cork stumbles upon a dead body, he begins his first foray into detective work. His father, who is the sheriff of Aurora, needs to confirm that the man is dead by suicide, as all evidence suggests. But Cork takes matters into his own hands to find out what may have gone awry.

Kent talks to Carol about how he decided to write this prequel that both serves an entry point for those new to the series (essentially functioning as a standalone), and also shares a backstory for longtime readers. He talks about some of the oft forgotten history of Minnesota in the novel --- including the repercussions of The Native Families Relocation Act of 1956, as well as his research, his inspirations, and a hint of what's next. Readers who enjoyed Ordinary Grace and This Tender Land will appreciate this latest novel.

Book Discussed in this Episode:
Lightning Strike by William Kent Krueger

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Photography Credit: Greg Fitzgerald