Boston lawyer Brady Coyne’s search for a missing cousin brings him up against murders past and present.
Among all Brady’s memories of fishing with his mother’s Maine relatives, one stands out: the discovery of the body of Norman Dillman with a bullet hole in his head. Norman was the abusive pipe fitter/petty criminal who’d married and shamed Brady’s Aunt Mary. Now, a generation later, Mary’s brother Moses Crandall, Brady’s favorite uncle, phones him out of the blue to invite him up to Maine for some get-reacquainted fishing. Moze wants more than a good catch and a nice chat, of course; he’s looking for Mary and Norman’s daughter Cassandra, whom Moze and his late wife Lillian had raised as their own. A year ago, Moze registered his disapproval of Cassie’s new fiancé, a dentist old enough to be her father, and she responded by cutting all ties to him. Now that she’s Mrs. Richard Hurley, she doesn’t answer her phone, and the dentist offers nothing but bland promises that she’ll call back as soon as she can. Eventually, Brady figures out why Moze is suddenly desperate to get in touch with her, why she won’t respond and what’s happened to her.
But Brady never does clear up the coincidences behind the trail of homicides that shadow Cassie or explain why he’s recycling a crucial plot twist from a dozen novels earlier in this laid-back series (Shadow of Death, 2003, etc.).