When Jen Forbus asked me to participate in DETECTIVES AROUND THE WORLD theme week, I immediately jumped at the chance to talk about Steven F. Havill's Posadas County Mysteries. I had missed this author, and his books, and only discovered them when I received one to review for Mystery News. And, with Left Coast Crime 2011 to be held in Santa Fe, it seemed appropriate to talk about New Mexico. But, the first book in the series, Heartshot, shows this certainly isn't the same New Mexico as we'll see in Santa Fe.
Posadas County, New Mexico is a border county with a small population. But, it's a large enough county to cause problems for the sheriff's department. When a car accident kills five teens, Undersheriff Bill Gastner reports to the scene. When $150,000 worth of cocaine is found in the car, he calls for his best detective, Estelle Reyes.
Gastner is over sixty, overweight, and smokes too much. But, he's totally committed to his job, and he and Reyes won't quit until they find the person behind the drugs. But, suddenly, they have two more deaths on their hands. Gastner is determined to restore peace, and find a killer, or die trying.
It's refreshing to read a police procedural in which the department works together, and respects each other. In many books, it wouldn't come as a surprise to find the sixty-year-old white male cop who doesn't like the Hispanic female deputy. Havill's characters respect each other, and work together to solve crimes. This is a satisfying series for those of us who love interesting, well-developed characters, a large number of books in which to read about those characters, and fascinating plots.
If you love good police procedurals, you won't want to miss Steven F. Havill's Heartshot, or the other fifteen books in the series.
Heartshot by Steven F. Havill. Poisoned Pen Press, published 2000. ISBN 9781890208295 (paperback), 208p.
Check out the other blogs participating in DETECTIVES AROUND THE WORLD. Jen has links to all of them, along with information about the scavenger hunt, here.