2018, 280 pages
Officer Mattie Cobb and her black German Shepherd, Robo, are the K-9 team working for the police in Timber Creek, Colo. Not only are they partners, but they have a unique bond. They are called to join a team riding up into the back country to investigate some grisly remains. A body has been burned in a fire pit on a ridge. Then three more sunken places in the grass are found nearby. Could this be the work of a serial killer?
The case brings up people and memories from Mattie’s past. Mattie is planning to meet with her brother, someone she hadn’t seen in years. But his girlfriend calls and he is missing. Mattie is afraid that he has gone back to using drugs. Then Robo is gravely injured and Mattie is kidnapped. As she struggles to escape, all Mattie can think of is, is Robo still alive?
This is an exciting mystery, the fourth in a series. Mattie and Robo are very likable characters, ones that you would like to get to know. Mattie’s history is expanded in this one, and her relationship to Cole, the town veterinarian, and his family is changing. Mattie is usually a loner, but she’s starting to let people in.
These mysteries remind me of the ones by Nevada Barr. If you like mysteries with a strong female lead, (and a charming canine one), then you should try Margaret Mizushima’s stories.
Robbin Bailey Concord Public Library
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