Sunday, June 20, 2010

Queen of the Night-J.A. Jance

Queen of the Night
J.A. Jance
Morrow, Jul 27 2010, $25.99
ISBN: 9780061239243

In 1959, ASU coed June Lennox travels with Sully from the Tempe, Arizona campus to Southern California for spring break. She never returns to school as she is left dead in the desert.

In 2009 in Tucson, retired Pima County homicide detective Brandon Walker visits his dying pal former Pinal County detective “Geet” Farrell at the hospice; they worked a serial killer case together back in 1975. Geet got Brandon a job with TLC (The Last Chance) entity that works cold cases. Hs current case is the homicide of June Lennox.

At the same time, Brandon’s wife Diana Ladd Walker still struggles with “visits” from the dead in her nightmarish past. They are Andrew Carlisle who tried to rape her, her late odious first husband Garrison Ladd III who set her up to be raped, and serial killer Mitch Johnson who kidnapped her adopted daughter Lani. At the same time, Pima County Homicide Detective Brian Fellows and Border Patrol agent Dan Pardee track a killer on the land of the desert people, the Tohono O'odham.

The latest extended Walker Family mystery (see Hour of the Hunter and Kiss of the Dead) is a great entry as J.A. Jance deftly balances her myriad of leads, their cases, the present day culture of the People and the geography. The multiple plots connect by the Walkers and company who diligently work at what they do best. Ms. Jance is at her best with this terrific mystery that blends past and present Tucson, Southern California and the Tohono O'odham Nation into a powerful thriller.

Harriet Klausner

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