Nail’s Crossing

Kris Lackey. Blackstone, $26.99 (216p) ISBN 978-1-4708-1407-6
Lackey’s atmospheric if initially confusing first novel revolves around the members of several law enforcement agencies with overlapping jurisdictions in hot and arid present-day Oklahoma. Tribal police officer William Maytubby and County Deputy Hanna Bond, supported by the Highway Patrol and the FBI, join forces when they discover the ravaged body of Majesty Tate, a prostitute who has been stabbed with a distinctive antler-handled Bowie knife. The knife sets Maytubby and Bond on the trail of Austin Love, an ex-con with drug and battery convictions. Most of the action takes place along the gummy asphalt highways, rutted country roads, and dusty tracks of Oklahoma, with a brief side trip to Louisiana’s Cajun country. As details of Majesty’s life come to light, the tone becomes murkier and more complex, involving other murders, blackmail, kidnapping, and deceit. This police procedural has much to recommend it—intriguing characters, vivid landscape descriptions, and some witty dialogue between Maytubby and his fiancée—but Lackey could have taken a lesson from Tony Hillerman in how to clearly delineate who and where the characters are. Agent: Richard Curtis, Richard Curtis Associates. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/16/2017
Release date: 10/01/2017
Genre: Fiction
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