SKELETON CANYON by J.A. Jance

SKELETON CANYON

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A year after they played Romeo and Juliet at summer camp, recent Bisbee High grads Brianna O'Brien and Ignacio Ybarra are at it again, this time for real. Nacio's aunt and uncle think the secret romance is a bad idea, but their disapproval is nothing compared to wealthy, crippled rancher David O'Brien's racist roars of outrage--outrage he directs unabated at Cochise County Sheriff Joanna Brady (Dead to Rights, 1996, etc.) when Bree goes missing from the cozy campsite where she'd been waiting au naturel for Nacio. Even the dullest reader will have surmised that Bree is dead, but Jance keeps this revelation from Joanna and her overworked deputies for nearly half the running time of this overextended tale, leaving only the second half for Joanna's tangle with a black-market Freon dealer; her ever-surprising mother's latest bombshell; the romantic misunderstanding between former prostitute Angie Kellogg and bird-loving naturalist Dennis Hacker; the skeletons tumbling out of the O'Brien family closet; and, almost as an afterthought, Bree's murder (which turns out to have been committed by the Arizona version of the wandering tramp so beloved of country-house whodunits). Most of the sitcom-shaped intrigues are so lightweight that the homicidal complications seem to have been airlifted in from Jance's tougher, stronger J.P. Beaumont series (Name Withheld, etc.).
Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1997
ISBN: 0-380-97395-2
Page count: 384pp
Publisher: Avon/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15th, 1997




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