cover image Death Where the Bad Rocks Live

Death Where the Bad Rocks Live

C.M. Wendelboe. Berkley Prime Crime, $15 trade paper (384p) ISBN 978-0-425-25611-4

Wendelboe’s serviceable follow-up to his first mystery set in the South Dakota Badlands, 2011’s Death Along the Spirit Road, has FBI agent Manny Tanno reassessing his Native American heritage after being assigned to the Pine Ridge Reservation. The recent discovery of human remains in a remote and inhospitable area of Pine Ridge used as a bombing range during WWII reveals murders took place there many years apart. New deaths—and an attempt on Manny’s own life—show that something in the maze of scorched rocks must be worth killing for. Manny must cope with flaky or obstructive members of the Oglala Sioux Tribal Police, the mistrust of local residents, and his own uneasy ruminations about what the spirit of the law demands. Wendelboe’s own experience as a western lawman helps make the dogged police work convincing despite fuzzy plotting and stolid prose. Agent: Bill Contardi, Brandt & Hochman Literary. (Sept.)