In the Wind by Barbara Fister
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Barbara Fister was recommended to me by a friend whose judgement I trust. We often separately choose to read the same authors. And when she mentioned that the author was also a librarian, I had to see what I could find. Unfortunately, my library didn't own either of her two mysteries. But Interlibrary loan found me both titles at the Delta Township District Library!
I quickly read In The Wind (2008) and enjoyed it. I probably won't be able to read the second title Through the Cracks before it is due back to the library. Reading time is going to be at a premium now that the holiday season is underway.
The book's cover carries a quote that Barbara Fister is "the heir apparent to Sara Paretsky" and having read Paretsky's V.I. Warshawski series, I concur. Actually in some ways they seem almost too similar in concept. But on reflection, Barbara Fister has actually created something a little more than unique.
The following quote took me so by surprise that I felt the need to copy it:
"By the way, December twenty-sixth isn't just the day after Christmas. It's the anniversary of the largest mass execution in the nation's history. In 1862, officials in Minnesota hanged thirty-eight Dakota Indians for alleged involvement in the Sioux Uprising. Following the mass hanging, the entire Dakota Nation was deported from the state, the men shipped off to prison, the women, children, and elders put on boxcars and sent to a godforsaken part of South Dakota with nothing but burlap sacks to keep themselves warm. I'll bet you don't remember this from history class."
Anni Koskinen, an ex-Chicago cop, now trying to earn a living as a P.I., struggles with her strong conscience concerning right and wrong. It is fascinating to see how today's counterintelligence practices aren't much different than what was going on during the Vietnam War era, and Anni gets caught in the middle when she is asked to help a good woman accused of crimes in the past. Complications escalate when the F.B.I. becomes involved targeting everyone including Anni's older brother Martin, who is autistic.
This definitely is a 'literate mystery'. Barbara Fister writes beautifully and creates a world we want to explore.
View all my reviews