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Dark Coulee

Claire Watkins, Book 2
Written by: Mary Logue
Narrated by: Joyce Bean
Length: 7 hrs and 28 mins

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Publisher's Summary

Claire Watkins, deputy sheriff of Pepin County, Wisconsin, makes a strong second showing that ought to gain her new fans. In spite of recurrent panic attacks associated with the death of her husband, Claire is starting to find the peace and security she's been seeking for herself and her 10-year-old daughter, Meg, since leaving her promising career with the St. Paul-Minneapolis police department for the small bluff town of St. Antoine.

One summer evening, while her sister Bridget takes care of Meg, Claire and Rich Haggard, a local pheasant farmer she's been dating for three months, attend a street dance in nearby Little Rock. Just as the fun gets under way, screams for help stop the music and put romance on hold. Someone has stabbed well-liked farmer Jed Spitzler in the chest. Members of the close-knit St. Antoine community join Jed's children in searching for Jed's killer.

Long-hidden town secrets are revealed as Claire seeks the truth and continues to struggle with her own demons.

©2000 Mary Logue (P)2013 Audible, Inc.

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  • Kathi
  • 12-05-13

Excellent second book in this series!

I read the first book in this series, and felt that while it was good, it had room for improvement. I am delighted to say that in this second book, Mary Logue has absolutely hit her stride! This one is very good!

The story involves Claire Watkins, a deputy sheriff who has moved to a small Wisconsin county with her daughter to get away from a situation (and memories) in which her husband was killed. She is trying to settle in, but dealing with panic attacks and grief from her former losses.

In this book, a man is killed who seems to have been disliked by many. However, the story of who he is, what exactly his past actions have been, are never viewed the same way by various citizens and family who knew him. Part of this story is solving the crime--but another part--and what makes this book so good--is the unraveling of who the victim was, and who truly had reason to hate him and want him dead (and why). They author has done a great job of keeping the reader/listener wondering about the circumstances all the way through, and has told a very poignant story of the man's children, who are left to try to hold themselves together after his death.

But, READER BEWARE: this author has done what annoyingly happens in too many series--she has used the previous (first) book as part of the back story in the present one, thus revealing a lot of what happened in the first. So if you have any ideas about reading the first one (and I think it is worth doing so, for a better understanding of the characters in this one), please read it first. However, for the reader who would not choose to do so--I'm sure this is a good stand-alone mystery.

I am very impressed with the way the author has met the potential that seemed to be present in the first book. The first has a good story, is a good read, but felt to me as though it left a couple of characters not very well drawn or their exact places understood (to me, anyway). It is still a good read--and this one is an excellent read (listen). I was not overly fond of the narrator in the first one and she is also better in this one. If the rest of the books are as good as this one, I eagerly look forward to hearing them! Highly recommend!

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