In the Clearing
A Tracy Crosswhite Mystery by Robert Dugoni
Review: Seattle Police Homicide Detective Tracy Crosswhite has been assigned to investigate the shooting death of Tim Collins. Both his wife, Angela, who was in the process of divorcing Tom, and their 17-year-old son, have admitted their guilt. But they've also hired Tracy's father, Atticus Berkshire, for their defense. And there's something about this case that troubles her. Separately, an old friend, Jenny Almond, has asked Tracy to look into, unofficially, a 40-year-old cold case, which was originally investigated by Jenny's father, Buzz Almond, once a deputy sheriff of Klickitat County, in In the Clearing, the third mystery in this series by Robert Dugoni.
In 1976, Kimi Kansasket, a Native American high school girl, was found dead along the route she took after leaving work. Tracy's own younger sister had been murdered not so very long ago and she had since then dedicated her career to trying to solve the unknown and bring justice and closure to bereaved families. She agreed to work on the cold case using leave that she'd accumulated. Jenny, now the deputy sheriff, gave Buzz's old files so Tracy could get acquainted with the facts. Buzz been remarkably thorough in making notes after every interview and the clues he picked up after Kimi's body was found. The evidence indicated that Kimi, having just broken up recently with her boyfriend, was so heartbroken when she saw him with another girl, that she threw herself off of a hill into the river. The case was closed as a suicide, but Buzz had some doubts. As Tracy worked her way through Buzz's records she felt something was missing. Not all of the people who were interviewed forty years ago were still alive, so the search for the truth was going to be difficult. She received no support from her current boss to reopen this case and plenty of objections for her trying to overturn the verdict of suicide. Will she be able to close Buzz's case in a way that would have satisfied him and bring closure to Kimi's kin while at the same time working her current investigation?
Sometimes having two cases being simultaneously investigated by the lead character, especially cases set forty years apart and completely unrelated, can be too much for a novel of suspense, but they're handled here remarkably well. Both storylines are solidly plotted, compelling and complex without being convoluted. That Tracy Crosswhite is such an engaging character certainly helps. In the Clearing is a very strong entry in this terrific series, and is highly recommended.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of In the Clearing.
Acknowledgment: Thomas & Mercer provided a copy of In the Clearing for this review.
Review Copyright © 2016 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Her Final Breath
Thomas & Mercer (Trade Paperback), September 2015
ISBN-13: 9781503945029; ISBN-10: 1503945022
The 7th Canon
Thomas & Mercer (Trade Paperback), September 2016
ISBN-13: 9781503939424; ISBN-10: 1503939421
Location(s) referenced in In the Clearing: Washington State
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In the Clearing by Robert Dugoni — A Tracy Crosswhite Mystery
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: May 2016
List Price: $15.95
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Page Author: Lance Wright
Site Publisher: Mysterious Reviews
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