cover image Consider the Crows

Consider the Crows

Charlene Weir. St. Martin's Press, $19.95 (263pp) ISBN 978-0-312-09772-1

Weir's second Susan Wren tale, following The Winter Widow , finds the transplanted (from San Francisco) chief of police of Hampstead, Kans., struggling against her own townspeople to solve two recent murders. Lynnelle Hames came to Hampstead in search of the mother who gave her up for adoption, but she winds up dead instead. As does, in short order, Dr. Audrey Kalazar, the ill-tempered vice-chancellor of local Emerson College. Time turns against Susan as her boss, the mayor, loses patience, and the citizens of Hampstead risk shooting each other with the guns they've bought for protection from the serial killer they're sure is loose. Weir's appealing heroine gets tired and hungry, is sometimes short-tempered and often lonely in her new town. Most importantly, she doesn't have all the answers, even when the clues are right in front of her. Unmistakably present, the clues are hidden among a satisfying number of red herrings sure to please the reader eager to solve the mystery along with the sleuth. This deceptively simple mystery is not easily cracked, a tribute to Weir's skills. (Sept.)