cover image All Men Fear Me: An Alafair Tucker Mystery

All Men Fear Me: An Alafair Tucker Mystery

Donis Casey. Poisoned Pen, $26.95 (310p) ISBN 978-1-4642-0470-8

America’s entry into WWI provides the backdrop for Casey’s absorbing eighth Alafair Tucker mystery (after 2014’s Hell with the Lid Blown Off). Passions run high in the small town of Boynton, Okla., the home of Alafair, her husband, and their 10 children. Patriotic zealot Emmanuel Clover, a Council of Defense member, is on the lookout for those not doing their bit for the war effort. In contrast, Dutch Leonard, a member of the Industrial Workers of the World labor union, opposes the far-off war. Innocent civilians such as German-born Kurt Lukenbach, Alafair’s son-in-law, and grocer Aram Khouri are caught in the general distrust of foreigners and socialists by hotheads like Billy Claude Walker. The arrival of Alafair’s IWW-activist brother, Rob Gunn, coincides with the unrest, acts of sabotage at the local brick works, and murder. In the middle of it all is “old Nick,” a ubiquitous stranger feasting on the conflicts and fanning the flames. Casey vividly evokes a tumultuous moment in U.S. history. (Nov.)