The History of Kate Shugak in 22 Objects – 12

Warning: Spoilers spoken here.

HoZ Kate12 cover

Of course you’re all right. It’s the lock box.


Commemorated in this scene, which begins

    It was entirely involuntary, a knee-jerk reaction.  She didn’t stop to think about it, she just picked up the little tin lock box and let fly.  It’s arc was swift and her aim was true.  The box caught him just above the left eyebrow and burst open.

but also for what Kate finds in it before she launches it as an offensive weapon slash foreplay. It’s also a pretty good symbol, if I sez it who shouldn’t, of Kate breaking free of her grief over Jack to begin to live again. Even if it is with the single most unlikely guy in the Kate ‘verse.

[Bonus points to anyone who remembers which book in the Kate series first signals Jim’s other than professional interest in her.]

the 23rd Kate Shugak novel
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Dana View All →

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29 Comments Leave a comment

  1. My first thought was the glacier. It is a secret keeper, if it wishes. It is serene when viewed in pictures, or from the air. However, underneath it is moving, grinding, destroying. Rather like the madness that sometimes overtakes a person. From all outward appearances, the person is placid and calm, but underneath we find the convoluted horror of the madness that consumes them. Long ago, a glacier carved the topography of The Park, and I think the Spirit of that long-forgotten mass is in those who live there.

  2. My choice is Kate’s cabin/cabins. Her abject sorrow of the loss of her birth place and the overwhelming humility and gratitude for the new is pretty powerful.
    Jim plants a big one on Kate in “A Cold Day for Murder.” Extra points? 😉

    • I think the first big kiss was in A Fatal Thaw. Jim landed his helicopter in Kate’s yard to warn her of a shooter on the loose and left her with a nice parting gift.

      • Ding! Ding! Ding! It astonished me how many fans were so surprised at the Kate/Jim relationship when the seed was planted so far back in their history.

      • Yes, Dana, but you were also making us fall for Jack and it would be impossible for the Kate you introduced us to to be unfaithful, so when she chose Jack, so did we. Anyway, that’s my excuse.

  3. I just re-read A Grave Denied a few days ago, so my thoughts about an object are fresh in my mind!

    I’d like to see the glacier…or at least *a* glacier. Without the glacier, there would have been no plot. Johnny wouldn’t have found the body, which would instead have been tossed in a river, or possibly enriching the soil under the vegetable garden.

  4. I have all 20 books on the adventures of Kate and Mutt. I hope we are not going to have a long wait for the next book. The ending of Bad Blood was a genuine cliff hanger, please don’t make us wait too long for the next book.

  5. My first thought was the cave in the glacier. Then I remember shedding tears the first time I read about Kate’s cabin burning down. It is her identity, her life and her refuge.

  6. Kate’s cabin, or at least her album. Re: Jim, the surprise is that he lasted since in all the previous books he was such a slut. Like Johnny, I thought he wasn’t worthy.

  7. I think you should include books as Kate loves them so much. I’m very glad to see that there will be a 21st, as it’s been almost 3 years since “Bad Blood” Thanks for all the wonderful reading, I have enjoyed Kate, Liam, and all the rest of your wonderful folks for many years.

  8. I made the mistake of reading the forwards of the books, and in the forward of The Fatal Thaw, you made a point of saying that Jim kissed Kate for the first time in this book. I remember thinking, why is that important? Does he kiss her again, later in the series? What does Jack think about that? I’d like to say I stopped reading the forwards after that, and was never spoiled again by them, but I can’t. 😒

  9. I’m going with the cabin. Her sanctuary, her protective shield, her family memories, her healing, all firmly embedded in that place.

  10. The first time you ever described Jim and their seemingly antagonistic relationship in the 1st book told me they’d eventually end up together, and I knew Jack’s death was coming from that book as well. I’m not right every time on my reading hunches, but I am more often than not, and it just felt like it. There are only so many things that can be done in a long series when it comes to personal relationships if they’re a major part of the main character(s), and I knew early on that you weren’t one to pull your punches.

  11. I will definitely have to re-read the series. I have all 20. Got so upset after reading Bad Blood, I couldn’t revisit the books. Waiting with bated breath for 21.

  12. I think it’s the cabin. It was part of her history, which is what we are looking at. Also because it’s the final burning of her relationship with Jack, and when Kate, Johnny AND Jim start to go forward. I love Jim’s development. The person he becomes is fitting for Kate.

  13. I dunno that I’d call Jim the least likely guy in the Kate ‘verse-I don’t think it’d be Bernie, Bobby she’s been there and done that and besides Dinah, and she’s related to almost all the others.

  14. Yes although I loved Jack and cried bitter tears when he died I was always secretly in Jim’s corner. I fancied him from the start Dana. And although he had a rep as a bit if a man whore he came good. The chemistry between Kate and Jim is off the scale.

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