Sunday, June 29, 2014

Rollover: A Dan Mahoney Mystery by Susan Slater

Wagon Mound might be a quiet, sleepy town, but it's not what it seems...

Poisoned Pen Press and Edelweiss gave me the opportunity to read this book for review (thank you).  It will be published in July, so check with your local bookstore for a copy.

Someone has robbed the bank, so Dan is on the case because the insurance company that he works for is sending him to investigate the theft.  The missing necklace is worth a lot of money and they want to confirm its theft, look at the evidence and see if there is any chance of recovery before paying the claim.

Dan's first clue that something is wrong is when his jeep overheats in the desert.  It's not long after that a pickup shows up and offers to take him to a service station for help.  He accepts, then he ends up in a traffic accident.  When he awakens from his injury, he finds out the driver is dead and that his jeep was tampered with.  It appears someone doesn't want him in Wagon Mound.  He refuses to let that bother him.

What he doesn't expect is that there is more than one illegal activity going on in Wagon Mound and neither one of them want him around.  His girlfriend shows up to help him while he's recovering and gets bit by the investigative bug, too.  She wants to be partners with him.  He likes the idea.  At least he does until they kidnap her.  Then he gets real scared he might lose her...

The pace is fast, the crimes believable and the small town characters are just that:  characters.  When people start dying, the police and Dan both step up their investigations.  I was surprised to find out who the real bad-doers were.

I live in New Mexico and was pleased that the author portrayed the small town and landscape accurately.  A doctor there was even trying to grow different desert grasses to bring back the prairie chicken population.  (They are getting more scarce here every day.)  I had fun with this one because it was set in my "backyard", talked about issues in our state, and was a good mystery, too.  Give it a try! 

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