cover image Not the Ones Dead

Not the Ones Dead

Dana Stabenow. Head of Zeus, $29.99 (336) ISBN 978-1-80454-016-9

Stabenow’s satisfying 23rd Kate Shugak mystery (after 2020’s No Fixed Line) once again pits criminal forces against Shugak’s tight-knit Alaskan community. After nine people die in a plane crash, PI Kate and her partner, former state trooper Jim Chopin, investigate reports of drones flying near the crash site. When a journalist gets tipped to the presence of a 10th, unidentified, body, a tangled web of criminality and competing law enforcement interests emerges. Anchorage-based FBI agent James G. Mason shows up, revealing to the local detectives that a group of white supremacists has been operating in town. More digging reveals that another federal agency has been monitoring the group, and that Mason, hoping to avoid a violent showdown, had an agent keeping tabs on the sinister new arrivals. Before long, Kate taps into her rich network of sources and figures out that the unclaimed body is part of a government coverup that won’t allow for an easy resolution. The busy but sturdy plot moves swiftly, and readers new to the series could pick up this entry without missing a beat. It’s a fine addition to the Shugak canon. (Apr.)