Five Star, Oct 2002, 25.95, 290 pp.
Nathaniel Wetherston owns most of the town of Whitford including being the chief stockholder of the Allied Insurance Company. He informs Farrell County Sheriff Frank Decker that history teacher Lou Cameron embezzled money from the insurance firm, but he refuses to press charges against the vanished individual. Instead, Nathaniel offers to take care of Lou's family. Frank has problems with picturing Lou as a thief or with Nathaniel behaving as a benefactor rather than a wronged person.
Frank makes inquiries trying to locate the missing teacher. He soon connects Lou with Willis Ardly an English visitor from the sister town also named Whitford, who has vanished too. As he digs deeper, Frank begins to connect a modern day crime including murder to a homicide that occurred over a century ago when people from Whitford, England visited the town last.
MURDER IN THE BLOOD is a fabulous police procedural that readers will fully enjoy. The investigation engages the audience as Frank struggles with a modern case that needs a historical solution. A subplot involving his out of control ex-wife adds little to the tale except to unnecessarily show that the hero is a kind considerate person, which he does through patience with his daughter and mother. Still fans of police procedurals that take fans on a strong investigative spin will want to read Gene DeWeese's fabulous novel.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner