We were introduced to Shana Merchant three novels ago and this fourth one is hot off the press, having been published on December 6, 2022. This editor was sent a proof copy and thus had a sneak preview. I admit, I thought I could take my time and enjoy the book for a few days, but no! It was one of those books where you want to miss dinner and stay up way too late before you put it down! If you enjoyed Tessa's other books and understand that she takes you in many directions before the end, this one will not be a disappointment.
However, you don't need to take my word, I know you will be interested by just reading the beginning of Chapter Two:
The air in downtown Alexandria Bay was so humid I could have wrung it out like a sodden towel, and it was a relief to sink into the arctic chill of the Village of Alexandria Bay PD. A squat tan building with a colossal antenna punching into the sky, the place looked like a cross between a radio station and a doomsday bunker, but at least it had A/C.
We’d had record highs for close to a week now, and for some, that was cause for concern. In four days, A-Bay would fill up with visitors from across the northeast, barrel-chested dads in baseball caps and raucous couples in their twenties clogging the streets of the town. They came for Pirate Days, the annual celebration of nineteenth-century smuggler and ‘river pirate’ Bill Johnston that drew more than a thousand spectators, many from across the border in Ontario. It was part historical reenactment, part renaissance fair, and it brought the tourists in droves. The wigs were heavy, the costumes constricting, and here we were in the middle of a heatwave.
‘That’s all we need,’ Tim had said a few days ago while wincing at the weather app on his phone. ‘Pirate week is the busiest of the whole summer. Folks can’t afford to lose that income.’
Add to that the book's synopsis and there you have it!
A missing tourist spells trouble for Senior Investigator Shana Merchant in this page-turning twisty mystery set in an atmospheric island community with a small-town vibe.
Former NYPD detective Shana Merchant is a skilled Senior Investigator keeping New York's beautiful Thousand Islands community safe. She's a loving partner. A strong woman. A survivor.
She's also bound by blood to a serial killer. And after months of concealing the truth from the world as she hunted Blake Bram down, her secret is finally out.
Shana just wants to get on with her life and win back her community's trust. But as Alexandria Bay fills up with tourists in advance of the annual festival known as Pirate Days, a visitor goes missing, and the case threatens to destroy not just the celebrations, but what remains of Shana's reputation.
Shana's not to blame for the killer in her family, but people are starting to whisper that she attracts trouble. That A-Bay was safer before she arrived. And as the investigation deepens, Shana starts to fear that they may be right.
Because while Bram is gone, he is far from forgotten.
Gift List Solved
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By Susan W. Smith, Editor, firstname.lastname@example.org
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