Synopses & Reviews
Unchecked urbanization has begun to eclipse the North Carolina countryside. As farms give way to shoddy mansions, farmers struggle to slow the rampant growth. In the shadows, corrupt county commissioners use their political leverage to make profitable deals with new developers. A murder will pull Judge Deborah Knott and Sheriff's Deputy Dwight Bryant into the middle of this bitter dispute and force them to confront some dark realities.
"Agatha-winner Maron's outstanding 14th novel to feature Judge Deborah Knott (after 2007's Hard Row) charts the social changes in rural Colleton County, N.C., as housing developments and shopping malls squeeze out small farmers. The apparent suicide of a greedy county commissioner sets Knott's husband, sheriff's deputy Dwight Bryant, on a case that uncovers corruption and murder. Though busy settling small-claims disputes and participating in family gatherings, Knott herself gets involved in the case because of implications for her own future in local politics. She's also worried about the activities of her father, who's retired as a bootlegger but is still an unrepentant flim-flam man. Maron observes the levelheaded Knott, her large extended family, neighbors and the whole community with cool but genuine sympathy; even criminals remain believably human. Those looking for a mellow, down-home mystery will be well rewarded." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
On DEATH'S HALF ACRE
"Those looking for a mellow, down-home mystery will be well rewarded."--Publishers Weekly (starred)
"[Margaret Maron] skillfully portrays the growing tension between family farmers and suburbanites....As always Maron weaves in a couple of subplots that keep things interesting and allow her to touch on a range of social issues."--Associated Press
"Outstanding....Maron tackles big issues...with insight and pathos....Maron has never written a bad book, and with the 13th in the series, she gives a clear picture of contemporary life in the rural South, tying it up in a neat mystery that keeps the reader guessing to the end. Highly recommended."--Library Journal (starred review)
"HARD ROW is laced with strong and timely political statements about undocumented workers....Readers will be satisfied with the newest entry in this reliable series."--USA TODAY
About the Author
Margaret Maron grew up on a farm near Raleigh and lived in Brooklyn for many years. Returning to her North Carolina roots prompted Marcia to write a series based on her own background, the first of which, BOOTLEGGER'S DAUGHTER, was a Washington Post bestseller and swept the major mystery awards for 1993. DEATH'S HALF ACRE is the fourteenth book in the acclaimed Deborah Knott series. Visit her website at www.margaretmaron.com.