cover image Taken by the Wind

Taken by the Wind

Ellen Hart. Minotaur, $25.99 (336p) ISBN 978-1-250-00187-0

In Lambda Literary Award–winner Hart’s absorbing 21st mystery featuring Minneapolis, Minn., PI and restaurateur Jane Lawless (after 2012’s Rest for the Wicked), Jane’s friend Andrew Waltz enlists her help when his 12-year-old son, Jack Lindstrom, and his nephew, Gabriel Born (also 12), go missing on an overnight camping trip. Meanwhile, Andrew and his estranged partner, Eric Lindstrom, must deal with antigay prejudice. Conservatives in the congregation of Suzanne Born, Gabriel’s minister mother, don’t exactly welcome diversity in their church. Soon a ransom demand arrives for $100,000, and Jane faces unpleasant choices in obtaining the money and in sorting out the roles of potential suspects, who include a local science teacher under pressure for refusing to teach intelligent design. Some unexpected twists and turns, as well as the uncertainties of Jane’s love life and the activities of her irrepressible best friend, Cordelia Thorn (a treasure of mystery fiction), will keep the reader guessing. Agent: Deborah Schneider, Gelfman Schneider Literary. (Oct.)