In the latest volume of Loehfelm's Maureen Coughlin series, the ambitious protagonist, now a rookie cop, tangles with some scary homegrown militia types called the Sovereign Citizens.
Coughlin is determined to make her mark in the New Orleans PD, which means she's bound to ruffle some good ol' boy feathers. As was made clear in Loehfelm's earlier Coughlin novels—The Devil She Knows (2011) and The Devil in Her Way (2013)—our heroine has both a strong will and a finely tuned moral compass. So when her fellow officers fudge some evidence at a traffic stop and one of her suspects is mysteriously lost by the sheriff's department, Coughlin is going to get to the bottom of what's going on—even if it implicates one of the most powerful families in town in a gunrunning, cop-hating militia group. Loehfelm has created a wonderfully flawed heroine in Coughlin, who began as a Staten Island cocktail waitress with a nose for trouble. Her move south mirrors Loehfelm's own, and his love for New Orleans is evident in his descriptions, from the greasy spoon the cops favor for gumbo to the rollicking frat bars of the French Quarter. Dialogue doesn't get much snappier, and the complicated plot (which not only introduces the militia group, but resolves the fate of the despicable murderer Scales from Way) is deftly handled.
This series just keeps getting better.