BITCH FACTOR by Chris Rogers


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 The Christmas recess hits Houston just before a jury can find rolling-stone salesman Parker Dann guilty of the hit-and-run killing of 11-year-old Betsy Keyes, and Dann's attorney, Belle Richards, is convinced that Dann's taken advantage of the break to go on a holiday of his own. But despite the evidence, she isn't nearly so convinced that he's guilty, and she doesn't want to drag the police into a chase that would certainly prejudice the case against her client still further. So she calls in her old friend Dixie Flannigan, an ADA-turned-skip tracer, and Dixie promptly leans on a few friends of her own to pick up Dann's trail. Sure enough, he's already outbound, and he's in Grand Forks, North Dakota, by the time Dixie catches up with him. But once she does, kapowie! Out come the stun gun and the handcuffs, and in a trice Dann is headed back to Houston in Dixie's custody, though it might be called kidnapping, Dixie's acutely aware, by any local cops who stopped them--a possibility that seems increasingly likely as a wicked snowstorm closes highways and throws her into uncomfortable intimacy with her quarry. By the time the two of them reach sunny Texas again (halfway through the story, which sags accordingly before switching gears and picking up a second head of steam), Dann, who insists he doesn't remember a thing about the accident, has Dixie looking for proof of his innocence--and turning over every rock in Betsy Keyes's troubled family. Rogers's debut is a generous two-course meal, even though Dixie's adventures on the road and her stint as a detective seem to belong in two separate novels.

Pub Date: Feb. 10th, 1998
ISBN: 0-553-10659-7
Page count: 320pp
Publisher: Bantam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 1997