The Indian Queen would risk torture and worse to keep her secrets from these barbarians in suits of metal and their search for cities of gold. They never found the gold. Empires rose; empires fell, the centuries passed. Legend became fireside myths, but no treasure was ever found. Yet, among the grey-green drapes of wisteria and wild jasmine along the misty shrouded lowlands of bayous and marshes of the Westo River, the folktales persist.
In the lazed creep of a near-tropical dawn lit the pungent Turkish coffee permeates Moccasin Hollow. Beyond the kitchen door Lucky, Craige Ingram’s German shepherd gnaws a favorite bone. Looted burial mounds seem a world away until plundered mounds on Moccasin Hollow land brings amateur archaeologist PI Craige Ingram into the cross-hairs of kidnapping. Stealthy hideaways are concealed in old colonial brick-lined river grottoes beneath the big house of Ardochy plantation. Sex-tape underage blackmail and thrill killings on federal land spur a medical examiner’s preliminary postmortem to more than a hired cleaner’s quickie cover-up passed off as drug deals gone sour. Greed tangles a witch’s pigswill of illicit affairs and murder-to-hide-murder. Shady investigators and shadier politics stir an unexpected concoction that threatens the lives of those at Moccasin Hollow in a spiteful plot against ex-SEAL Craige Ingram and the woman he loves.
Westobou Gold is book two in the Moccasin Hollow Mystery Series featuring strong, intelligent ex-SEAL Craige Ingram and his beautiful, intelligent girlfriend Terri Wofford Stanley - a woman he fell in love with and then saved from death at the hands of a sadistic murderer in book one.
In this Westobou Gold, we start with a historical flashback to set the stage - a gold treasure hidden from invaders by the Indian Queen. Then it's to current times and a discussion of the illegal poaching of relics by those selling to private collectors. BUT the plot moves quickly from there to a pornography ring and several disturbing death scenes. As one involves soldiers, Craige is approached to step in and help figure out what is going on.
This book is a spider web of plots, from relic poaching to local teens pulled into a pornography ring to murders by Purvis, a violent and crooked law enforcement officer seemingly at the centre. His brutality is disturbing to say the least, just like in the first book in this series, so be sure you like your murder mysteries with a dark edge. Craige senses there is more than what is obvious and begins to sense a shadow pulling the strings. Step by step he begins to unravel the mystery while attempts to tarnish his reputation and then take his life occur. And the death toll rises.
MacKinney is a strong writer with a knack for bringing characters and locations to life. My one objection is the book's editing is weak. This is something I mentioned in my review of the first book in this series as well. There are distracting mistakes here and there that take away from the story for me. Hopefully this will be dealt with in future book in this series.
Since retiring Hawk has authored several novels that have received national and international recognition. Moccasin Trace, a historical novel, was nominated for the prestigious Michael Shaara Award for Excellence in Civil War Fiction and the Writers Notes Book Award. The Cairns of Sainctuarie, his science fiction series, includes The Bleikovat Event and The Missing Planets, with a third book in the works. Hawk’s latest project focuses on The Moccasin Hollow Mystery Series. Book 1 in the series, Hidden Chamber of Death, was released early 2016.
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