It’s a Mystery: Borderline, by Nevada Barr

Borderline (Anna Pigeon Mysteries, #15)Border crossings

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Big Bend National Park along the Rio Grande is the setting for the 16th Anna Pigeon novel. Anna and her husband Sam take a whitewater rafting trip, hoping to relax and recuperate following some harrowing experiences (Winter Study). Accompanying them are a local park ranger and some inner city teens. The adventure begins calmly enough, but some rough weather causes flash flooding, and soon the rafters are fighting for their lives. The situation is further complicated by the discovery of a pregnant woman’s body in the river, a stranded, starving cow, and a sniper with a deadly aim.

As always in this series, nature plays a key role in plot development, and by now, Anna’s an expert at surviving in the wild. The rest of the plot, however, is rather flat in comparison with previous ones, and the other characters, including Anna’s husband, are strangely colorless. The political maneuvers that provide the impetus for the action seem too tepid to serve as a motive for the havoc that they cause, and, all things considered, Borderline is one of the weaker links in the Anna Pigeon saga.

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