An Alaska MysteryBook - 2003
No author on the crime fiction scene brings the beauty, mystery, majesty, and danger of the Alaskan frontier more vibrantly alive than critically acclaimed award winner Sue Henry. Now she takes us due north once more to this rugged land that famed "musher" and sometime sleuth Jessie Arnold calls home -- a breathtaking world where the summers are brief and winters, like death, are cold and long.
With August drawing to a close, Jessie Arnold is feeling empty. Not even the return of a friend can lessen her disappointment over having to miss the approaching Alaskan dogsled racing season because of her recent knee surgery. But a request to help man the Iditarod booth at the Alaska State Fair is a godsend, something that keeps Jessie involved and happy . . . until a corpse turns up on the fairgrounds.
The murder is an especially brutal one: a small-time hoodlum dispatched by a double-blade axe blow to the skull. Though she has already seen too much death in her lifetime, Jessie becomes a participant in the proceedings when her beloved lead sled dog, Tank, vanishes. Angry and sick with worry, she sets out to find him and unwittingly discovers connections that link Tank's disappearance to the murder and a recent theft in bizarre and disturbing ways.
Friends new and old are soon involved as well. Musher Lynn Ehlers, the parents of a local boy, and state troopers are plunged into a desperate and harrowing search that leads them across lush forested valleys, up silent, forbidding mountains, and into Alaska's darkest heart. Because, suddenly, a sled dog is not the only missing player in this drama. Under alarming circumstances, Jessie Arnold has also vanished.