Formerly the star investigator in the Anchorage D.A.'s office, Kate Shugaknow tracks down criminals from her Aleut homestead. But she and her wolf-dog Mutt aretaking a June break to pick wild morel mushrooms among the charred trees left by adevastating forest fire. In the ashes Kate also uncovers the mysterious corpse of a nakedman. And when she is "hired" by a ten-year-old to locate his missing dad, she fears shehas already found him. The reason how and why he died, however, is buried deeper thanhis body. Finding it will lead Kate to the remains of a woolly mammoth in a Fairbanksmuseum, back to her old lover Jack Morgan, and far afield to an isolated settlement ofreligious fundamentalists . . . as she follows a twisted road toward a smoldering evil andthe flash point for a macabre murder. The fifth Kate Shugak mystery, Play With Fire, contains all of Stabenow'shallmarks of ingenious plotting and vivid characterizations. Best of all, it is again set inmagnificently austere, endlessly fascinating Alaska, which comes to life through theauthentic details only a true insider can provide.