Today I am reviewing In the Clearing by Robert Dugoni. I thank both NetGalley and Thomas & Mercer for graciously providing me with an eGalley of the book in exchange for my honest review.
About the book (from the publisher): Detective Tracy Crosswhite has a skill, and a soft spot, for tackling unsolved crimes. Having lost her own sister to murder at a young age, Trace has dedicated her career to bringing justice and closure to the families and friends of victims of crime.
So when Jenny, a former police academy classmate and protégé, asks Tracy to help solve a cold case that involves the suspicious suicide of a Native American high school girl forty years earlier, Tracy agrees. Following up on the evidence Tracy’s detective father collected when he was the investigating deputy, Tracy probes one small town’s memory and finds dark, well-concealed secrets hidden within the community’s fabric. Can Tracy uphold the promise she made to the dead girl’s family and deliver the truth of what happened to their daughter? Or will she become the next victim?
My review: I have read and reviewed the previous two books in this series. I liked them very much. This, the newest book in the series, does not disappoint. The series started off with Tracy Crosswhite intent on finding the truth as to who killed her younger sister. And that loss has fueled her career choice , giving her an empathy for those families who are left behind in the wake of the murder of a family member. She is determined to do all she can to help them find the truth.
I like her. She’s dogged in her pursuit, relentless in examining the evidence, and will stop at nothing to bring the perpetrator to justice. She’s also a crack shot, having won shooting competitions when she was a teenager.
In this particular case, she is using her own time to work on the forty-year-old case, while also pursuing an investigation in the Seattle police department, where she works. Dugoni nicely balances these two cases, moving back and forth between them.
The cold case is riveting. As Tracy learns more and more about it and uses her contacts to look at the evidence and photos saved by her friend’s father, she is convinced it was not suicide. Now she has to get people to talk about something they clearly don’t want to discuss.
Dugoni knows the ins and outs of the legal world as well as that of the police. The detailed descriptions of the investigatory process and the legalities that must be taken into consideration all ring true and provide a tremendous amount of realism to the story. He also knows the Pacific Northwest and, as in his other two books, the descriptions of that part of the country are rich with color and a strong sense of place.
Dugoni also knows how to drive a plot, building suspense bit by bit, until the reader can no longer put the book down but has to keep going straight to the end. I know. I’ve done that with all three books. Tracy is a strong protagonist. We are also learning more about each of her colleagues on the police force with every new story in this series. There’s a nice build happening here and I look forward to the next book in the series.
I highly recommend this series. You can find those other reviews, by the way, under Book Reviews on Mockingbird Hill Cottage.
This book will be published on May 17, 2016.
About the author: Robert Dugoni is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and #1 Amazon Bestselling Author of the Tracy Crosswhite series: My Sister’s Grave, Her Final Breath, and In the Clearing. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed David Sloane series.
Dugoni has twice been nominated for the Harper Lee Award for Legal Fiction, was a 2015 International Thriller Writer’s finalist for Thriller of the Year, and the 2015 winner of the Nancy Pearl Award for Fiction. His books are sold world-wide in more than 20 countries and have been translated into a dozen languages.
The above link is an Amazon affiliate link. I earn a wee bit of money if you use it. Thanks for helping support Just Let Me Finish This Page!