Memories of the deaths of her husband and her former partner are giving former Twin Cities police officer Claire Watkins (Blood Country, 1999, etc.) panic attacks as she tackles her new job as Deputy Sheriff of Pepin County, Wisconsin. She’s reluctant to tell her new boyfriend Rich Haggard, a pheasant breeder, about her visits to a therapist, but is happy to accompany him to Little Rock’s annual street dance. It’s there that widowed farmer Jed Spitzler is found stabbed to death in the middle of the party, leaving teenaged daughters Nora and Jenny and son Brad parentless. Their mother Rainey had died four years ago in a gruesome accident . . . or was it an accident? The answer is essential in solving Spitzler’s murder, especially after Pit Snyder, the town’s beloved mayor, is arrested for the crime. In due time, Claire finally faces up to the truth about her own past, even as she helps Jenny fight drug addiction and puts Spitzler’s killer behind bars.
Convincing characters, a believable plot, and writing that can be downright lyrical make Logue’s fourth absorbing all the way—her best to date.