Bantam, June 2004, 6.99, 251 pp.
When Roy Slater left Kingdom County to go to college, he vowed he would never return. Nobody, not his father or the woman he loves, wanted him. Guilt makes him return to care for his father who has only a few months left to live. Lila, his only love, lives in the poorest section of the country but he doesn't expect to see her because she wrote him a note saying she wouldn't marry him.
To temporarily get away from his father, Roy visits Sheriff Lonnie Porterfield, who is called out to look at a dead body; Roy tags along. The dead man is a tenant on Lila's land so Roy ends up seeing her and realizes he still has feelings for her even though he won't act on them. Roy's brother Archie confesses to killing his girlfriend's father and mother two decades ago and hangs himself in the cell three days later. Roy and his father believe the old sheriff Wallace Porterfield, a crooked, violent thug, knows more about the case than he lets on and they both start investigating. What Roy finds out puts him in a killing rage, and only a miracle can prevent blood from being shed.
Master storyteller Thomas H. Cook is a literary giant in the psychological suspense genre and always writes a story that enthralls the audience. INTO THE WEB is more than just a story of reworking an old crime in the hopes of getting new information; it is a story of a father and son who finally reconcile after many years of misunderstandings. The protagonist is a bit passive but he had to be written that way for the story to work.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner