The story opens on a July morning with the discovery of a frozen corpse at a brake check just south of the Grapevine Pass in L.A. County. Hunter Rayne, a retired homicide detective turned long haul truck driver, is in southern California making a delivery, and is persuaded by his irascible dispatcher, Elspeth Watson, to help clear two fellow truck drivers who are arrested for the murder. His job is made more difficult by the fact that the suspects, a newlywed couple, won't speak up in their own defence.
The circumstantial evidence is strong, and a rookie detective from the L.A. County Sheriff's Department is eager to score a win. The investigation crosses the Canada-U.S. border when the victim is identified as a second rate musician from Vancouver, and it turns out there were more than a few desperate people happy to see him dead, including the accused couple. Hunter has to use all his investigative skills to uncover the truth.
Hunter's ex-wife maintains that by taking to the highway Hunter is running away from his past, but he believes that the solitude of days on the road is helping him to heal from guilt over the failure of his marriage and the suicide of his best friend. His life gets more complicated when he feels an unwelcome attraction for a lawyer representing one of the accused. Tangled relationships and multiple suspects emerge throughout the novel, as Hunter butts heads with more than one officer of the law to solve the crime.
Ice on the Grapevine was a finalist in the mystery category of the 2012 Global Ebook Awards.