cover image Cape Perdido

Cape Perdido

Marcia Muller, . . Mysterious, $24.95 (320pp) ISBN 978-0-89296-006-4

MWA Grand Master Muller delivers a relatively routine stand-alone, a murder mystery with an environmental veneer, which falls short of the quality of her acclaimed Sharon McCone series (The Dangerous Hour , etc.). When a greedy North Carolina corporation seeks to harvest water from a quiet California lumber town—the Cape Perdido of the title—Jessie Domingo, a public and community relations consultant, and Fitch Collier, an arrogant and difficult attorney who specializes in water rights, team up to help the community fight the interloper. The conflict between the townspeople and the company rapidly escalates after a sniper takes a shot at one of the huge bags to be used to transport the water. The lingering shadow from a decades-old unsolved murder connected to many of the local players in the dispute complicates Domingo's work and leads to even more violence. Less than compelling characters and a pat ending mark this as an uncharacteristic lapse for Muller, who hopefully will return to form with her next book. Agent, Molly Friedrich. (July)