Vengeance Is Mine: A Red River Mystery
Reavis Z. Wortham
Poisoned Pen, Jul 1 2014, $24.95
In 1965 hit man Tony Agrioli met newlyweds Center Springs Constable Cody and Norma Faye Parker while they were on their honeymoon in Vegas. He liked what they said about their small Texas town and thought if he survived his job he would retire there.
Two years later, defying the Family by failing to kill two Cuban tweeners, Tony wants out of the murder business after falling in love with Samantha Chesterfield. She accepts his proposal of marriage and they agree to move to Center Springs to raise a family there. However instead of a peaceful town as the Parker couple once told him; nothing goes right especially when the Family arrives, but apparently not for him. Soon Cody’s Uncle Ned, also a constable, leads an investigation into a homicide, counterfeiting and bank robbery with the sheriff interfering in the inquiry and his teenage grandson Top and the lad’s cousin Pepper adding chaos to the pandemonium.
The fourth fantastic Parker clan historical police procedural (see The Right Side of Wrong, The Rock Hole and Burrows) is a great 1960s period piece thriller in which segregation remains strictly enforced and border issues are not on the radar screen. The Parker crew is solid as they deal with hell arriving in Center Springs.