By Jon Talton
(Poisoned Pen Press, Paperback, 9781590586440, 224pp.)
Publication Date: April 2009
Categories: Mystery & Detective - Police Procedural
""In the quiet of my forgotten office in the old country courthouse, behind the plastic doorplate that reads 'Deputy David Mapstone, Sheriff's Office Historian, ' I fiddled with the tribal fashion of cops. The tan uniform blouse with epaulets and pocket flaps, the opening above the pocket made for a cheap Cross pen, and the gold-plated 'MCSO' letters running parallel on each side of the collars. ... An off-white felt Stetson sat on my desk. We might be one of the largest urban counties in the United States, but we kept our Old West traditions. ...""Historian-turned-deputy-sheriff David Mapstone returns in this exciting sequel to Jon Talton's "Concrete Desert," When his friend Peralta, newly sworn in as sheriff, is shot by a sniper, "History Shamus" Mapstone can't keep a cool, academic distance. And he'd better not: while Peralta lies comatose in the hospital, the powers-that-be appoint Mapstone acting Sheriff in his place. Peralta feels unqualified, but he's the only person who's temporary appointment won't infuriate all the other candidates who want the Sheriff's position permanently. Meanwhile, a cryptic note scrawled by Peralta before the shooting forces Mapstone to confront his own personal history, which has drawn him unwittingly into danger. As Mapstone discovers, the past has deadly consequences. The mean streets of the New West have never been more sinister.
Author Jon Taltonas writing was developed over 20 years as a journalist, working for newspapers in San Diego, Denver, Dayton, Cincinnati, Charlotte, and Phoenix. Jonas columns have appeared in newspapers throughout North America. Before journalism, Jon worked as an ambulance medic in the inner city of Phoenix. He now lives in Seattle, WA.
“In this clever plot-twister, a bizarre series of actions transforms Deputy David Mapstone, who debuted in Concrete Desert (2001), from mild-mannered historian of the Sheriff's Department of Maricopa County (Ariz.) into acting sheriff…Talton handles the difficult task of having his hero play simultaneous roles of acting sheriff and lone wolf without losing credibility. The Arizona setting (from the 1970s to the present) is faultless…Talton has mined another gem from the Southwest's trove of memorable sheriffs.” –Publishers Weekly of Camelback Falls “A worthy successor to Talton's critically acclaimed debut, Concrete Desert (2001).” –Booklist of Camelback Falls