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by Nevada Barr
Putnam, March 2005
336 pages
ISBN: 0399152415

Buy in the UK | Buy in Canada

Anna Pigeon has finally married Paul Davidson in Mississippi but his job is keeping him there while hers takes her to Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado. Three girls disappeared while on a religious retreat, and the staff are somewhat disappointed that they have not been able to find them even after weeks of searching.

Heath Jarrod was a world class ice-climber until she fell and lost the use of her legs. She and her aunt, who is also her physician, are camping in the park. Jarrod is, understandably, depressed about her situation and her aunt feels that getting away for a bit will help. The depression continues until Jarrod finds a reason to care about something other than her situation when two of the three missing young girls appear at the campsite.

The children are from a group that has set up just outside the park boundary. It is a religious cult who take the two girls back and do not let outsiders investigate further. Anna and Heath combine forces to find the truth behind the disappearance of the youngsters and, while doing so, Jarrod finds that she can learn to live and be useful, even though she can no longer walk.

This is the 13th book in the series and Barr is back on track with this one after a couple of weaker entries. Anna, at 50ish, although in fine physical condition, must consider her future, and Heath Jarrod, a new character, is younger but damaged. She must also consider her future.

Barr has created a second strong female character to go along with Anna Pigeon. She has also brought Anna back to the West where she belongs. It will be interesting to see what Barr does with Pigeon in her new role as wife and as she approaches retirement.

Reviewed by Barbara Franchi, April 2005

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Contact: Yvonne Klein (ymk@reviewingtheevidence.com)

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