Warner, Mar 2004, 5.99, 352 pp.
In the small Hudson Valley town of Sokanan, with less than two weeks before retirement, Detective Hank Bonner investigates the murder of convenience store employee Luka Kole. The case looks like a simple robbery turned ugly, but Hanks has problems because the thief failed to take a bank sack containing one thousand dollars. When he notices a newspaper clip involving the Renaissance Oil of Russia deal inside the victim's wallet, he visits the consultant listed in the article.
Alexandra Baker informs Hank she does not know Luka before tossing him out as she hosts a gala for Renaissance Oil guru Miki Petrov. Alex is upset with her friend's murder, but continues with her plan to destroy the man who killed her father thirteen years ago in Russia. Though Hank looks forward to nurturing his depressed niece and nephew, he places the pressure on Alex. He is told to back off by everyone including his brother the mayor. He ignores everyone except Alex who he falls in love with even as he wonders how she is connected to Luka and his killer.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner