cover image In Big Trouble

In Big Trouble

Laura Lippman. Avon Books, $7.99 (352pp) ISBN 978-0-380-79847-6

When Baltimore PI Tess Monaghan receives an envelope postmarked Boerne, Tex., containing a photo of Crow, her former musician boyfriend, and a scrap of newspaper headline reading ""in big trouble,"" a day's outing to visit Crow's parents in Charlottesville, Tex., turns into a road trip to unknown territory. Tough and street savvy in her hometown, the former reporter feels lost in the land of the Alamo. Crow seems to have disappeared with a mysterious blonde singer, and as Tess searches for them, she encounters a wall of family secrets behind which may lie the reason for the body count rising around her. Lippman's (Charm City) colorful characters--especially the proprietor of Tess's temporary no-tell motel, and homicide detective Al Guzman--add amusement to this gripping mystery. (Sept.)