STEWBALL: A Montana Mystery Featuring Gabriel Du Pr

Peter Bowen, Author . St. Martin's Minotaur $22.95 (210p) ISBN 978-0-312-27730-7

In Bowen's winning 12th Gabriel Du Pré novel, the Montana lawman agrees to help his Aunt Pauline find her current husband, Badger, who's gone missing. Du Pré contacts his FBI friend, Harvey Wallace, who shows him a photo of Badger, shot dead at the base of the skull execution-style. And that's just the beginning of an investigation that involves a racehorse named Stewball, treasonous government agents and two, or possibly three, charred corpses in a plane. None of this seriously discomfits Du Pré, who remains as relaxed as ever, even in the face of illegal horse racing and a scalping. As in previous Du Pré books, the fast-paced narrative offers ample doses of local color, evenly spaced bursts of violence and an unforced, laid-back style. While this contemporary western mystery breaks no new ground, it rewards with its pleasing lack of pretension. (Apr. 18)

Reviewed on: 03/21/2005
Release date: 04/01/2005
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