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Library Journal -12/01/2013
Keller's (A Killing in the Hills) second mystery is again set in Acker's Gap, WV. Here, the body of a pregnant young woman, Lucinda Trimble, is found in a car in the Bitter River, but an autopsy reveals that she was strangled before she went into the water. Prosecuting attorney Bell Elkins and Sheriff Nick Fogelsong dig into Lucinda's complicated past to identify her killer. As the story progresses, the investigation takes a backseat to a detailed examination of life in a small, decaying Appalachian town. Keller gives us numerous character studies of its inhabitants and provides a feel for living in the mountains. She also tells a problematic secondary story regarding a man from Elkins's past whose appearance in town leads to a tragedy, which serves as a distraction from the main portion of the novel. Reader Shannon McManus does an excellent job with the story. VERDICT Recommended to listeners interested in stories set in Appalachia. ["Even an imperfect Keller novel is still well worth readers' time. Recommend to mystery lovers who enjoy richly drawn settings and whip-smart heroines," read the review of the Minotaur: St. Martin's hc, LJ Xpress Reviews, 8/30/13.]—Stephen L. Hupp, West Virginia Univ. Parkersburg Lib.