Sarah Andrews’ newest geological mystery finds geologist and investigator Em Hansen helping out the Salt Lake City police on the murder of a fellow geologist. Dumped in a gravel quarry, his arms and legs removed and his face bashed in so he’ll be unrecognizable, Em IDs him anyway because of a strange tattoo—a geological map of the world—she spots on his body: It’s Afton McWain, a controversial figure who worked in big oil in Colorado but who now works in the field of water and droughts.
In Andrews’ universe, things are never what they seem, and the murder may have as much to do with McWain’s personal life (his ex or his common-law wife?) or his overzealous dedication to the “green” lifestyle (the traditional neighbors of his liberal ranch)? as it does with his job. Either way, the combination of suspense and science makes this novel another winner.