Sunday, June 26, 2005

Bootlegger's Daugher by Margaret Maron

This one is the latest selection that my senior book club chose to read. Maron is a local author, although her books are well-known all over the country. This particular book is the first in the Deborah Knott series of mysteries. Deborah is a judge (well, in this book she is still just a lawyer) in a small town that seems to be somewhere in Johnston County. The town where all the main action occurs is fictional, but all the others are real... Garner, Smithfield, Goldsboro, Wilmington, and Raleigh all get mentioned.

The set-up is intriguing... especially to a fairly new mother like myself. A woman is discovered dead in an old barn on someone else's property after she has been missing for three days. Beside her is her baby daughter (about six months old) strapped into her carrier and hoarse from wailing, sitting in three days worth of dirty diaper and very hungry.

16 years later, the case is cold and Deborah gets involved as a favor to the girl who was the baby from the initial set-up. Deborah's political views and her sense of justice come through in a strong southern voice that is genuine and fun to read. I actually had it figured out about midway through the book, but the folks in my book club said they were all surprised at the end. If you have read it (or read it because of this post), let me know if you had it figured out and when... I'm curious!

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