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   No Good Deed, by Lynn S. Hightower  
  Novel, first publication in 1998
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    Buy No Good Deed by Lynn S. Hightower
       Additional Information  
      Lynn Hightower's female characters take no prisoners. Sonora Blair, tough-but-vulnerable Cincinnati police detective, knows the father of 15-year-old Joellen Chauncey is involved somehow in his daughter's mysterious disappearance. But Sonora's boss, partner, and colleagues think she's crazy. Dixon Chauncey is a devoted single father of three, and a mild, self-effacing milquetoast who's much too "squishy" to be a suspect. Sonora doesn't buy the official line--that Joellen got caught between two feuding scam artists involved in a thoroughbred swindle--not even when the girl's body turns up, along with an empty, blood-spattered horse trailer. Sonora won't ignore what her gut tells her. And when Joellen's diaries open up a whole new line of investigation tied into a missing children's network, she renews her efforts to find the crack in Dixon's façade. The plot is full of seductive McGuffins: the owner of a riding school who lands in the hospital minus a finger; a mysterious and sexy stranger hanging around the barn. The narrative meanders a bit, taking in Sonora's failings as a single mother to her own kids, her impulsive decision to buy a horse, and her overactive libido (which fastens itself on three different men in a little over 300 pages). But the book is crisply written, with resonant characters and a suspenseful narrative. It's a special treat for horse fanciers.


    The first time Sonora saw the farm, it was dusk, and there were horses running in the paddocks. It did not seem like the kind of place where a young girl of fifteen could saddle up a horse for an afternoon ride, and never come back...
    Joelle Chauncey did not disappear without a trace -- she left blood, and a discarded riding boot. Cincinnati police detective Sonora Blair, a single parent herself, has a feeling this child is not coming back. Tracks from a horse trailer indicate both Joelle and the mare she was riding were taken together. Who was the target--the girl, or the horse?

    Nobody saw a thing. The farm owner, Donna Delaney, was out. The uncomfortably handsome veterinarian from the farm next door heard nothing. The girl's father, a single parent, was at work.

    Joelle's disappearance is only the beginning ... and after a grisly mutilation at the barn, no one is getting involved. But crime talks, and Sonora is led by an eerie and unsettling presence, a killer wrapped in layers of internal conflict, a killer who will follow a bizarre path of good and evil, and dark compulsion. No Good Deed is the story of a child's brutal abduction . . . a lover's betrayal . . . and a good cop's journey into the darkness.

      Part of series  
  • Sonora Blair (#3)

      Related theme(s)  
  • Cops - Sheriff
  • Earth
  • Murders
  • Mystery
  • U.S.A.
  • Women - Feminism - Gender Issues

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