I read this book about 25-Apr-2007. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 1996. This note was last modified Tuesday, 01-May-2007 22:44:56 PDT.
This note contains spoilers for the book.
Montana. Blue Deer Montana. Where Sheriff Jules has come home, after many careers including as an archeologist, to be sheriff.
This year, the "Wrangle" (annual rodeo) is a bit more exciting than usual. Starting with two locals whose tent was pushed into a lake by a truck a few days before, proceeding to an apparent accident with a roping horse at the wrangle, and onwards. Death rate is way up—somebody should have warned the locals there was a writer watching the town.
Turns out there are ties to local land speculation and resort development, "green" political tradeoffs, and lots of local history. These are definitely "sense of place" books, and I don't find the characters too compelling personally (but then they're the kind of people who settle in Blue Deer Montana, and I'm not one).