The Burning

Ballantine. (Clay Edison, Bk. 4). Sept. 2021. 304p. ISBN 9780525620112. $28.99. THRILLER
Deputy coroner Clay Edison’s fourth case (after Half Moon Bay) hits close to home. A raging wildfire blankets the San Francisco Bay Area in thick smoke. A lengthy power outage makes things worse. When Clay arrives at a well-hidden mansion, he finds the body of Rory Vandervelde, a wealthy man with valuable collections of cars, sports memorabilia, and more. An inventory of these collections leads Clay to his brother Luke, an ex-convict with substance abuse issues. When Luke’s wife calls to say that her husband is missing, Clay knows that he needs to find him. As his own pregnant wife and young daughter are visiting family in Los Angeles to escape the smoke, he can spend more time on his undercover search. He discovers ties to past crimes, bends enough rules to get himself in major trouble, and endangers his life in the process.
VERDICT As always, the Kellermans guarantee that readers will turn pages rapidly to enjoy the complex characters and intricate plot turns. It’s another winner for mystery readers.
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