Black Hills

Authors Franklin and Jennifer Schneider give readers a small town in Whitehurst, South Dakota. Alice Riley, a PI, is going to investigate an assault charge. The charge is against a man who is basically leading a double life and that can be deadly. He's got a live in, a prostitute named Kim. That's just the tip of the ice berg. He's doing "devil dust", a new drug to Whitehurst. The drug is powerful, deadly powerful.

The authors puts two unlikely people together to investigate this charge. Alice and Kim? A PI and a prostitute? Wow, that is quite a combination. Kim knows the streets and knowns people who can get her into places that Alice can't get into. The reader thinks this is just a couple people doing drugs, but the investigation leads into drug dealing that has been going on for a very long time. This dealing isn't just with the people on the streets. It goes way up the ladder, to the very top. With that kind of high dealing, secrets are kept and as Alice gets closer and learns more. Soon people start dropping like flies. They're disappearing. What's going on? Things are starting to get really dark and evil and Alice is right in the middle. Will she be the next to disappear? The truth can be deadly!

The authors gives us a fast moving plot. It’s not so fast that you can't keep up, but you don't have time to be bored either. I found Alice to be tough. Not just because of the gun on on her hip, but she is a strong willed woman. She doesn't need a man, she has herself and she's got the smarts to figure things out. Like all strong willed women, she's hard to figure out. She's a complex woman. Then we get the drug scene and how it can go up the ladder to the top. I found it interesting that Alice and Kim worked together. Alice didn't find herself above helping for help.

Will Alice prevail? Will the drug ladder rungs be broken one by one? Pick up a copy and you'll find that small towns can be deadlier than big cities. Whitehurst is definitely a badlands.

Book Blurb for Black Hills

When Brooklyn private investigator Alice Riley reluctantly travels to Whitehurst, South Dakota, to investigate an assault charge against her ex-boss’s husband, she discovers more than just a tawdry small-town scandal. A surveyor for the local fracking operation, the accused was leading a dangerous double life—shacking up with a prostitute named Kim and overindulging in Whitehurst’s deadly new drug, a powerful stimulant called “devil dust.”

Out of her element in this badlands boomtown, Alice joins forces with the street-smart Kim, whose connections open doors some in town would rather keep closed. Working together, they descend into the heart of the local drug trade, unraveling a decades-old conspiracy that reaches to the top of Whitehurst’s social strata.

As Alice comes closer to cracking the case, however, people around her start disappearing. With the case and her life spinning out of control, Alice embarks on a single-minded, dust-fueled campaign to expose the truth—an effort that will take her to the darkest places imaginable.

Night Owl Reviews Oct, 2016 4.00