cover image Blood Grove

Blood Grove

Walter Mosley. Mulholland, $27 (336p) ISBN 978-0-316-49118-1

Early in MWA Grand Master Mosley’s strong 15th Easy Rawlins mystery (after 2016’s Charcoal Joe), Craig Kilian, a vet traumatized by combat experiences in Vietnam, arrives unannounced one day in 1969 at the L.A. detective agency that employs Easy. Craig, a white man, tells Easy he got into a fight with a knife-wielding Black man who was about to attack a white woman tied to a tree at a remote campsite. After fatally stabbing the Black man, Craig was hit in the head and lost consciousness. When he woke up, the body and the woman were gone. WWII vet Easy feels sympathy for Craig, and agrees to help find out what happened at the campsite. The upright detective soon becomes caught in a web of trouble involving stolen money, grisly murders, and weird sex clubs. Amid all the twists and turns and double-crosses, Easy confronts racism, an enduring feature “of the America I loved and hated.” Mosley does a fine job highlighting a world of Black survivors who know how difficult their struggle remains, every day of every decade. This marvelous series is as relevant as ever. Agent: Gloria Loomis, Watkins Loomis. (Feb.)