Buffalo Bill's Defunct
Review: Sheila Simonson embarks on a new series featuring residents of the small town of Klalo along the Columbia River Gorge in south-central Washington State, introducing county librarian Meg McLean and sheriff's investigating officer Rob Neill in Buffalo Bill's Defunct.
Meg had left the hustle and bustle of southern California for a quieter life in the Pacific Northwest. Her new home is a 19th century farmhouse with a 1920's era garage addition. Rob happens to live in a neighboring house. While airing out the garage prior to moving in her possessions, another neighbor's dog runs in and begins digging, exposing a buried body in what appears to be a storage bin for illegal "hooch". Next to the body is a piece of an Indian petroglyph that may be part of a collection of artifacts that was stolen 10 years earlier. The original owner of the house, a prolific bootlegger a hundred years earlier, must have used the storage bin until his hooch was ready to be delivered to his clients. But how a body came to be buried there is a mystery. His grandchildren owned the house most recently, selling it to Meg. Rob, realizing Meg's skills in computer research, deputizes her and together they begin to reconstruct the events leading up to what was found in Meg's garage. The body turns out to be the nephew of the current chief of the local Klalo tribe, Madeline Thomas, from which the artifacts were originally stolen. The search for more clues leads to exposing a case of corruption, greed, and two more murders.
The appealing characters and picturesque setting in Buffalo Bill's Defunct overcome some of the more pedestrian aspects of the story. There is camaraderie, conflict, and even a touch of romance between the main characters with the addition of the colorful Klalo chief to mix things up a bit. It's entertaining and fun and, though a little light on the mystery plot, a good start to a new series. The title is taken from a poem written by E. E. Cummings, published in 1920.
Special thanks to guest reviewer Betty of The Betz Review for contributing her review of Buffalo Bill's Defunct.
Acknowledgment: Perseverance Press provided a copy of Buffalo Bill's Defunct for this review.
Review Copyright © 2008 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
An Old Chaos
Perseverance Press (Trade Paperback), September 2009
ISBN-13: 9781880284995; ISBN-10: 1880284995
Location(s) referenced in Buffalo Bill's Defunct: Washington State
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Buffalo Bill's Defunct by Sheila Simonson — A Latouche County Mystery
Publisher: Perseverance Press
Format: Trade Paperback
Publication Date: September 2008
List Price: $14.95