Sunday, January 8, 2012

Plunder-Mary Anna Evans


Mary Anna Evans

Poisoned Pen, Mar 6 2012, $24.95

ISBN 9781590589311

An environmental company hires archeologist Dr. Faye Longchamp-Manttoth and her husband Joe Wolf Mantooth to research and document archaeological sites at the mouth of the Mississippi below New Orleans. The routine work turns complicated as the Deepwater Horizon explosion threatens the historical locales with massive oil and the couple’s company as their client offers a lot more money for the mother lode of an environmental impact statement, but Faye doubts they have the capacity to take on the expanded scope; they can’t say no as that would kill their firm as well.

Adding to their difficulties is Dauphine the babysitter of their one year old toddler Michael is injured and unable to watch the infant. They hire teenage amateur treasure hunter Amande Landreneau as the babysitter. Amande lives with her irresponsible grandmother on a dilapidated houseboat and at times her alcoholic uncle joins them. She quickly adulates the independent Faye with plans to avoid the foster care system by caring for herself. The teen proves helpful with locations, but everything changes when her neglectful relatives are murdered.

The latest Faye Longchamp archeological mystery (see Strangers, Floodgates, Findings, Artifacts, and Relics) is made fresh by the impact of the Deepwater Horizon disaster and the appearance of wonderful Amande who steals the show from the adults. Filled with action, Mary Anna Evans makes a strong case that the Louisiana coast known for pirates still has raiders plundering the natural resources.

Harriet Klausner

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