Title: Blood Ties
Julie Collins is stuck in a dead-end secretarial job with the Bear Butte County Sheriff’s office, and still grieving over the unsolved murder of her Lakota half-brother. Lack of public interest in finding his murderer, or the killer of several other transient Native American men, has left Julie with a bone-deep cynicism she counters with tequila, cigarettes, and dangerous men. The one bright spot in her mundane life is the time she spends working part-time as a PI with her childhood friend, Kevin Wells. When the body of a sixteen-year old white girl is discovered in nearby Rapid Creek, Julie believes this victim will receive the attention others were denied. Then she learns Kevin has been hired, mysteriously, to find out where the murdered girl spent her last few days. Julie finds herself drawn into the case against her better judgment, and discovers not only the ugly reality of the young girl’s tragic life and brutal death, but ties to her and Kevin’s past that she is increasingly reluctant to revisit. On the surface the situation is eerily familiar. But the parallels end when Julie realizes some family secrets are best kept buried deep. Especially those serious enough to kill for.
Author: Lori G. Armstrong
Other books by this author that we've reviewed: Hallowed Ground, Shallow Grave, Snow Blind
Series: PI Julie Collins #1
Other books in this series that we've reviewed: Hallowed Ground, Shallow Grave, Snow Blind
Source: Purchased for Self
Published: May 1st 2005
Genres: Crime Drama
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Purchase your copy: Amazon
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I found this book through BN’s Free Book Friday and was a boon that was! I loved everything about this book.
Julie Collins is a mess. She drinks too much, smokes too much and swears like a sailor. She’s quick to get in a fight and on the surface seems unlovable. She’s damaged by an abusive father and the too early death of her mother and her brother. She’s not quick to give her love but when she does she gives her entire heart. Her brother Ben being one of those. She didn’t know of his existence for the first decade or so of her life but she takes to him immediately and is devastated by his unsolved murder. Her friend Kevin is another she loves with all her heart. He’s been her lifeline through all the crappy things she’s had to deal with. Watching her with the neighbor child even further proves Julie isn’t cold and uncaring like her crusty exterior would imply.
The dogged way she pursues the murder of a young girl is no doubt influenced by everything I cited above. Julie proves to be a very adept investigator even though her pursuits often leave her with new damage.
The mysterious Tony Martinez may have a small role in this book but wooza. He’s sexy and the ultimate bad boy.
Armstrong write great mystery with plenty of rich characters. The plot is fast moving and intriguing with lots to keep the reader guessing and on the edge of their seat.
The first thing I did upon finishing this novel is to buy the rest of the series. I’ve owned it forever and can’t tell you how many times I’ve reread it. Armstrong is on my “must read” list from here on out.