Kilauea’s smoldering lava fields — a unique place to bury the bodies.
Recently, I had the pleasure of reading a new crime novel by Robert McCaw, Off the Grid. And it’s like the jacket copy was made just for me.
For those of you who don’t know, I am the co-host of a true crime podcast, Lifetime Sentence. I am a true crime addict. I watch Forensic Files and everything Investigation Discovery has to offer. I’ve made a hobby of talking about murder. I know, I know. It’s so morbid. You don’t have to tell me.
All that to say, a book about murders in Hawaii seemed like the perfect read for me, especially following a book that I was not quite feeling. And what a breath of fresh air this was, too! I mean, as fresh as murder can possibly be.
Let’s talk about Koa Kāne for just a moment. This detective is this dark, twisted, complicated, amazing character, sprawling out on pages before me. His job is tough; he’s investigating a particularly gruesome murder, unusual and uncharacteristic for the area. Koa suffers survivor’s guilt: when he was active duty Spec Ops, his best friend was shot by the bullet that was intended for him. He’s also plagued with his own dark, violent secret that he’s repressed so far back he can’t even tell the woman he loves.
As Koa starts piecing together clues, he finds that the victims of the murders he’s investigating were living in a home that was disconnected from everything. They were living “off the grid.” (Get it? That’s the title of the book.)
What with espionage, conspiracy, CIA and Spec Ops, Off the Grid rang every one of my bells. I loved my time with it. McCaw is a gifted writer. He draws you into Hawaii with him, with Koa; he writes with a love for the setting. He writes Hawaii as if it is its own character, rather than a setting.
If you’re as weird as me–somebody who loves to read about crime and murder–then this is definitely the book for you. Grab it before summer is officially gone and soak it up while you can.
4 out of 5 stars.