Multnomah, Oct 2003, 11.99, 320 pp.
The city council led by mayor Charlie Kirby voted to allow the Thompson Tire Company to relocate to Barter, which means more jobs for the resident. Not everyone is in favor of the plant being built. Some residents fear that the new business will destroy the ambiance of the town and in turn the downtown shops. Charlie's most vocal enemy Avery Stedman starts a rumor that the reason the mayor pushed for the plant to be built was because he was having an affair with Thompson Tires attorney Sheila Paxton.
The rumor threatens to destroy the Kirby marriage. When Sheila is shot, her picture is plastered in newspapers across the country and comes to the attention of a Mafia hit man, searching for her father for eighteen years. He is a deadly sociopath who kills with no remorse and threatens to harm the town's newspaper editor if she doesn't locate Sheila's father who is in the witness protection program. It will take a miracle to save the Kirby's marriage and keep the editor safe after a trap to catch killer fails.
This is the last book in the Baxter series and it is a powerful story filled with characters readers have come to love and cherish. Two of the main characters of this series are traveling to a new town and will be starring in The Seaport series so the audience won't lose touch with Guy and Ellen. A FINE LINE shows how gossip can hurt people and push people to the breaking point. Kathy Baxter is a master at writing suspense within the parameters of a small town drama.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner