Joe Gunther, a policeman for most of his adult life, gets the call that every cop hates: A fellow officer has been killed in the line of duty. During what appears to have been a routine traffic stop on a dark country Vermont road, a deputy sheriff was shot to death. From what can be seen on the cruiser’s video recorder, the killers appear to be a couple of Boston-based drug runners.
Gunther and his Vermont Bureau of Investigation are brought in to identify the killers—and track them down up and down the northeast shoreline. Meanwhile, Alan Budney, the disaffected son of a Maine lobsterman, is a man with big ambitions—to usurp and replace the state’s primary drug kingpin, a plan that will inevitably place him on a dangerous collision course with Gunther’s investigation…
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Deputy Sheriff Brian Sleuter was looking for a better country/western station when the Toyota flew by, spraying a few roadside pebbles against the front bumper of his cruiser.
"Jesus Christ, Bud," he said softly, turning on his headlights, putting the car into gear, and hitting his blue lights—all in a single, well-practiced gesture—"why don’t you flip me the bird while you’re at it?"
He fishtailed into the road from his hiding place, his rear tires spinning before gaining purchase, and took off down Vermont Route 7 with a burst from the Impala’s
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“Superior…will leave fans feeling fully satisfied.”—Publishers Weekly
“Mayor’s skills are equal to the vigor of his imagination, and we take his word for every twist, every turn, every thunderbolt.”—New Yorker
“Elegant, even lyrical prose...a new Joe Gunther is always good news.”—Booklist
“Suspenseful...Mayor’s New England eye mercilessly details what he sees without the ‘calendar nostalgia’ that usually clings to such villages and backwaters...The clever plot expands like a dark whirlpool and reveals the underbelly of Vermont and Maine.”—Providence Journal-Bulletin
“As with all Mayor’s novels, the plot remains fresh and timely. Through his in-depth knowledge of police work, forensics and the medical field, combined with his ability to evoke the Vermont landscape, Mayor deftly brings the reader deep inside the story, taking us along the trail of meticulous detective work needed to bring out the truth.”—Brattleboro Reformer
Archer Mayor, in addition to being a novelist, is also a death investigator for Vermont’s Chief Medical Examiner, a deputy for the Windham County Sheriff’s Department, and has served twenty-five years experience as a volunteer firefighter and EMT. The winner of the NEIBA award for Best Fiction, he lives in Newfane, Vermont.