Fire and Ice
Morrow, Jul 21 2009, $25.99
Tamos Rivera was ordered by Miguel to kill the woman; pull out her teeth, pour gasoline on her, and light her up. Afraid of what Miguel would do to his family if he failed to carry out this command, Tamos obeys except for failing to remove the teeth. In the Spring as the snow melts in Washington state, her body is found. She is the sixth victim killed in the same way.
State Attorney general’s Special Homicide Investigation Team, including J.B. Beaumont and his wife Melissa Majors Soames, investigate the case. Using every method at their disposal, they find the latest victims was living in a trailer using the name Marina Aguirre, but realizes that was not her legal name. The team visits the trailer park owner and learns the deceased left behind $50,000 in her refrigerator before vanishing. The dental records affirm she was Marcella Andramade whose brother and son live in Cochise County, Arizona where Sheriff Joanna Brady works. Her sibling is determined to uncover his sister’s killer, but Brody tries to stop him knowing his life would be forfeited too as well as devastating a federal operation in the works for months.
While the main plot centers on the six dead women, Brody has her hands full with her own caseload including the murder of a man ran over by several ATV’s and a nursing home scandal that increasingly looks criminal; she also deals with personal problems. Brody has no time to spare for Beaumont’s case, but she does though that means even less sleep for the sleep deprived even when the feds tell her to back off. Combining her superstars through an exciting story line, J.A. Jance proves she is one of the best police procedural authors writing today as she balances two states two cops, and the nasty serial killer who connects them.