Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-07-27
- Reviewer: Staff
Set in 1967, Wortham’s engaging fifth Red River mystery (after 2014’s Vengeance Is Mine) focuses on two cousins: aptly named Pepper Parker, the feisty 14-year-old granddaughter of Constable Ned Parker of Center Springs, Tex., and Top Parker, Ned’s grandson, who’s a little older than Pepper and is often mistaken for her twin. Bored with small-town life, Pepper decides to run away to California and manages to talk Cale Westlake, a boy she likes, into going with her. Ned and Pepper’s father get on the trail of the clueless hitchhikers, who run into scam artists, hippies, and bikers on their journey west. Meanwhile, a robbery by three town wastrels goes bad and two visiting strangers are killed, a crime that Sheriff Cody Parker and his new deputy, Anna Sloan, try to solve. Wortham nails the time period, the hardscrabble town, and the people, for whom family loyalties are paramount. Agent: Anne Hawkins, John Hawkins & Associates. (Sept.)