Putnam, Nov 2001, 24.95, 304 pp.
Holly Barker is going to the chapel to get married. Her best friend Daisy, her Doberman Pincher, will serve as the maid of honor. However, Holly's elation abruptly turns to horror when her fiancÚ is murdered during a bank robbery that turned violent. Holly leads the official investigation that takes her to a town not found on the most detailed of maps. The inhabitants are white supremacists who recruit Holly's dad Ham into joining their organization.
Ham pretends to join the militia and quickly assumes a key role amidst the group. Holly and her law enforcement peers obtain Ham's cooperation and he places listening devices in the organization's encampment. This enables them to learn that Ham is selected to assassinate a VIP, but no one knows whom the intended victim is. Unless they can learn the identity of the target, someone will die.
Stuart Woods has his more famous character Stone Barrington makes cameo appearances in ORCHID BLUES, which allows fans to feel a greater connection to the Barker series. Holly is a humorous independent soul who copes with grief by diving headfirst into a mystery filled with more twists and turns than that found in a maze. This is a good read on a cold winter's night.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner