Cork O’Connor Books

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The name Cork O’Connor refers to a series of novels written by William Kent Kruger. The books follow the exploits of Cork O’Connor. Born Corcoran O’Connor, Cork is part Irish and part Anishinaabe Indian.

Order of Cork O'Connor Series

1Iron Lake1998Description / Buy
2Boundary Waters1999Description / Buy
3Purgatory Ridge2001Description / Buy
4Blood Hollow2004Description / Buy
5Mercy Falls2005Description / Buy
6Copper River2006Description / Buy
7Thunder Bay2007Description / Buy
8Red Knife2008Description / Buy
9Heaven's Keep2009Description / Buy
10Vermilion Drift2010Description / Buy
11Northwest Angle2011Description / Buy
12Trickster's Point2012Description / Buy
13Tamarack County2013Description / Buy
14Windigo Island2014Description / Buy
15The World of Cork O'Connor2016Description / Buy
16Manitou Canyon2016Description / Buy
17Sulfur Springs2017Description / Buy
18Desolation Mountain2018Description / Buy
19Lightning Strike2021Description / Buy
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When he is first introduced to readers, Cork’s life is going down the drain. Cork was once the best police officer Aurora, Minnesota had. However, he lost his position on the force. If that wasn’t bad enough, his marriage is all but dead and it is taking everything Cork has to keep his relationship with his children alive, his separation from his wife having also taken them away from him.

All in all, there isn’t much in life that Cork cares about, and it takes caffeine and a whole load of guilt to get him through the day. However, despite not being sheriff of Aurora, Cork cannot seem to stay out of trouble.

Even after he has been away from the job for several months, the townspeople continue to treat him as a Sheriff. He spent so much time fulfilling the role that it became part of his identity. As such, whenever someone is murdered or they go missing, Cork O’Connor becomes the first person people call, this to the chagrin of the people that replaced Cork.

Cork, for all his faults and issues, remains a simple, honest man with a good heart. He can never walk away from injustice. And when the hurting and the desperate come running to him, he cannot help but put his non-existent Sheriff hat on and do his part to solve the crimes running rampant in his community.

Cork has a distinct advantage as a gentleman of mixed race. While the town of Aurora is at peace, there is some unavoidable tension between the white residents and their Indian neighbors. The mistrust that sometimes runs in between them is so intense that the Sheriff who replaced Cork O’Connor is sometimes unable to do his job when crime involving the Indian Community occurs because they will not corporate with him.

This isn’t a problem for Cork because the Indian community often welcomes him with open arms and this puts him in a situation to solve crimes that his Caucasian counterparts are reluctant to approach.

William Kent Krueger, the author, has been praised for creating a unique, stark and rather raw setting for his Cork O’Connor mysteries. The town of Aurora and the wilderness that surrounds it is often treated like a living and breathing character in the story.

Cork O’Connor Awards

William Kent Krueger has received nominations and even won awards for his Cork O’Connor series, these including a Loft-McKnight Fiction Award, a Minnesota Book Award, Barry Award, Anthony Award and a Dilys Award to mention but a few.

Best Cork O’Connor Books

William Kent Krueger’s Cork O’Connor books utilize the author’s love for anthropology to create stories that are steeped in Indian Mythology and mysticism, with some of the best books in the series including:

Boundary Waters: The Quetico-Superior Wilderness is not the sort of place in which anyone has any business getting lost, not when you are dealing with two million acres of forest and even a few uncharted Islands.

But that is exactly what happened to a highly popular country-western musician. And Shiloh’s father isn’t ready to leave the search for his daughter in the hands of the FBI which is why he reaches out to Cork O’Connor in Aurora, Minnesota and asks him for help.

While Shiloh fights for her life and Cork joins the FBI manhunt to find her, the people of Aurora are forced to deal with strangers who descend on the town.

Blood Hollow: A beautiful high school student disappears. When she turns up dead months later, a local boy, her boyfriend, takes the blame. Cork O’Connor thinks the boy was foolish to go into hiding, but he doesn’t think the young man is actually guilty of murder. He decides to investigate the murder with the intention of finding the killer and clearing the boy’s name.

To achieve his task, Cork must overcome a lot of bigotry and bureaucracy.

Other Book Series You May Like

The “Alex McKnight” Series by Steve Hamilton is a good one. Alex is a former member of the Detroit Police Department. He has since moved on to renting out his cabins in Michigan to make a living. When the crime rate spikes, Alex takes a job as a private investigator in Paradise. Michigan

You may also like the “Walt Longmire” Series by Craig Johnson. Walt Longmire is the Sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming. Even after two decades on the job, Walt keeps coming across cases that surprise him.

What Is The Next Book in The Cork O'connor Series?

There doesn't seem to be an upcoming book in The Cork O'connor Series. The newest book is Lightning Strike and was released on August, 24th 2021.

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