Bantam, Mar 2002, 6.50, 336 pp.
In Southampton, Long Island, private investigator Frank Gannon hires Declan MacManus to tail a client's son-in-law who might be cheating. Declan wants to say no, but cannot allow his best friend Augie, still recovering from severe injuries, to go on the case alone.
Augie and Declan conduct a stakeout in a lonely back road when they notice a person in the nearby woods. Soon a car arrives followed by an explosion with the vehicle falling into a pond. Declan pulls the driver out of the water, but is too late to save the teenage girl. Because of his poor relationship with the police chief, Declan leaves the area. Later, Augie informs Declan that the police destroyed the crime scene evidence. That night both men are separately attacked with Augie killing one of his assailants and Declan badly injuring his. The police arrest Augie for murder, forcing Declan to take his buddy's teenage daughter into his home while trying to prove his friend's innocence against a conspiracy that includes the police.
THE BONE ORCHARD is an exciting private detective mystery that belies the fact that this book is D. Daniel Judson's first novel. The story line is loaded with action as readers take a tour of the underbelly of the Hamptons. Declan adheres to what he believes is morally correct and is aided by the secondary characters providing depth so that readers fully grasp how much ethics mean to him and how much future appearances by him will mean to the audience.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner