Vicki Delany is one of Canada's most varied and prolific crime writers. Under Cold Stone is the seventh in the popular Constable Molly Smith series, which began with In the Shadow of the Glacier. She also writes standalone novels of gothic suspense including More than Sorrow. Vicki lives in Prince Edward County Ontario, where she rarely wears a watch. Visit her at www.vickidelany.com
Under Cold Stoneby Vicki Delany
But trouble interferes when strong-willed Lucky
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Passionate environmentalist, old-time hippy Lucky Smith and Paul Keller, Chief Constable of Trafalgar, British Columbia, are an unlikely couple. Their vacation to the Rocky Mountains is a chance to explore their fledging late-in-life relationship. They plan to indulge themselves at the famous Banff Springs Hotel.
But trouble interferes when strong-willed Lucky stands up to two bullies in the local coffee shop, one of whom turns out to be Paul�s estranged son, Matt.
This chance encounter soon becomes a quagmire of trouble when a frantic Matt calls his father for help. Lucky and Paul rush to his aid to find a body, but no Matt. All signs indicate that Matt�an experienced wilderness adventurer�has escaped into the backcountry. To RCMP Sergeant Eddie Blechta, running is all the proof of guilt he needs.
Paul Keller can do nothing but watch the investigation from a distance, terrified that Blechta is right.
Lucky�s daughter, Constable Molly Smith of the Trafalgar City Police, abandons her chaotic Thanksgiving kitchen to offer her mom support. She has no intention of meddling in the investigation, but when Matt�s girlfriend, Tracey, asks for her help, Molly Smith finds herself not only interfering but putting herself on the wrong side of Edward Blechta.
Can they find Matt and clear his name?
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Lucky Smith, the mother of Molly Smith and recently widowed, and Chief Constable Paul Keller, recently divorced and Molly’s boss, somehow after years of antagonism have formed a relationship. So when Canadian Thanksgiving loomed, they decided to take a fancy long weekend at the plush Banff Springs Hotel. Of course, there turns out to be a fly in the ointment of a potentially idyllic four days: Paul’s ne’er-to-do (and estranged) son, Matt, and his boorish roommate, Barry, encounter Lucky when she is waiting on line at a coffee emporium, attempting to shove in past her. Never one to ignore a confrontation, Lucky fends them off. But later, sitting in the dining room at dinner with Paul, the two men enter and Barry pours tea on Lucky. Paul is embarrassed by his son, but later that night he gets a phone call from Matt, who had found Barry in their apartment stabbed to death. Paul tells him to call the police. Instead he flees, making him suspect number one. Naturally, Paul as a policeman becomes involved with the Mounties, who make no progress in finding Matt or solving the murder. Lucky, very upset, calls Molly to travel to Banff and support her in her effort to keep Paul’s spirits up. Not one to sit still, Molly informally starts nosing around despite being warned by the RCMP sergeant in charge of the case to stay clear of the investigation. Meanwhile, back in Trafalgar, the construction of vacation homes on a prime tract of wilderness land provides another subplot as environmentalists threaten demonstrations. All seem to tie together as this, the seventh novel in the Constable Molly Smith series, draws to a close. The characters are well-drawn and the plot moves forward at a brisk pace. The only question left unresolved is when will Molly and Adam, her fiancé, get married. And then there is the incipient Lucky-Paul bond to consider. Recommended.