First Lines: Friday afternoon, mid-July. A stitch in her side plagued Deputy Mattie Cobb as she jogged uphill, telling her that her level of anxiety and this form of exercise didn't mix.
When Deputy Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner Robo accompany a Fish and Game officer up into the high country around Hanging Falls to check for trail damage, they find a body floating at the edge of a lake. When Robo catches the scent of a homeless man living in the forest, this person rapidly becomes suspect number one.
With the help of local veterinarian Cole Walker, Mattie identifies the victim and finds herself visiting some new residents to the Timber Creek area: an odd religious cult whose dress and manners hark back to the nineteenth century. As clues are gathered and the list of suspects grows, Mattie has a dream come true. She is visited by members of her long-lost family, and she's hoping that they will be able to shed light on the night when she was abducted at the age of two.
Hanging Falls, the sixth book in Margaret Mizushima's enjoyable Timber Creek K-9 series, has more of what I always look forward to: wonderful outdoor scenes in the high country of Colorado, animals like Robo to enjoy, and catching up with some of my favorite fictional characters.
I found the mystery in this book to be a bit pedestrian, but perhaps that's because I've read Betty Webb's Lena Jones mysteries. What is more important (besides those riveting scenes up in the mountains) is Mattie finding out more about what really happened during her traumatic childhood.
I've enjoyed this series, not just for its animals and high country action, but also because of its characters. Mattie's journey to put her past behind her touches the heart as does Cole Walker's attempts to balance a very busy veterinary practice with his home life and two daughters. He's trying very hard to be there for his two girls after they were abandoned by their mother. Mattie's fellow police officers also play important roles in the stories.
I'm slowly recuperating from my trek up to Hanging Falls, and now it's time to wait once more for Mattie and Robo's next adventure.
Hanging Falls by Margaret Mizushima
Crooked Lane Books © 2020
eBook, 288 pages
Police Procedural, #6 Timber Creek K-9 mystery
Source: Net Galley