MYSTERY

Dead Big Dawg

Gallery: S. & S. (Loon Lake, Bk. 19). Jun. 2019. 208p. ISBN 9781440598838. pap. $16.99; ebk. ISBN 9781440598852. M
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The shooting death of an elderly woman is the first sign of trouble in Loon Lake, WI. Next, police chief Lewellyn Ferris and her friend Dr. Paul Osborne track their grandchildren to a neighboring farm where the FBI has set up a cybersecurity post. With problems involving drunk young people and a burgeoning summer population, Lew’s three-member police team rely on help from other forces when a power couple from Chicago are found shot in their home. Then a woman’s body is recovered from the water, and Lew can’t turn around without another murder occurring. But a neighboring fishing guide starts to connect the dots, and although Lew always has time to teach others about fly-fishing, this character-driven mystery is anything but leisurely paced. There’s a strong sense of place in this descriptive story set in a wilderness community dependent on fishing, hunting, and tourism.
VERDICT Houston’s latest, following Dead Firefly, may appeal to Sean McCafferty’s readers, fans of fly-fishing, and wilderness mysteries. At the same time, readers who appreciate Steven F. Havill’s tales of close-knit communities may also want to try.

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