Horns of a Dilemma
Author: Jo A Hiestand and Paul Hornung
Published: May 1, 2007 by Hilliard & Harris
Series Name: The Taylor & Graham Mysteries
Category: Police procedural and cozy
Main Character: Det-Sgt Brenna Taylor and Det-Chief Inspector Geoffrey Graham
Things seem comfortably routine that Ash Wednesday evening in the English village of Hollingthorpe ⎯ the regulars have come together to turn the Devil’s Stone, the age-old custom of shifting a one-ton boulder in the churchyard. An odd, back-breaking custom that defies logic ⎯ except that to dispense with it always brings misfortune on the villagers during that year. Yet within minutes of shifting the great boulder that evening misfortune ⎯ or someone ⎯ does strike. One of the participants lies beside the stone, very dead and very bloody. The CID Team from the Derbyshire Constabulary thinks that solving the case will be a snap. After all, isn’t their boss, Detective-Chief Inspector Geoffrey Graham, right there and a possible witness, one of the stone turning participants? But no one, evidently, has seen a thing, including Graham. And those who might have observed the terror aren’t talking. Is it fear, the particularly vicious attack, or murmured threats that keep everyone mum? The disappearance of the vicar’s son could be just teen-age rebellion, but it hints at a threat that is linked somehow to the murder. Could the boy know something, leaving the killer no choice but to dispose of a potential witness? In the midst of the two investigations Detective-Sergeant Brenna Taylor begins to wean her emotions from Graham. But in a midnight, rain-lashed forest, a heart-wrenching episode with him threatens to destroy her resolve. And through it all, the killer silently slips into and out of their lives, thumbing his nose at the entire CID team, ready to strike again.