Title: Close to Home – (The Tracy Crosswhite Series) by Robert Dugoni
Genre: Currently #1 on Amazon Authors Rank for Kindle eBooks, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Mystery, Police Procedurals
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Publication Date: September 5, 2017
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title and Cover: Close to Home – Boat, nautical theme suggests coastal location
Congratulations to Robert Dugoni today on his book launch of my first (but won’t be my last) Tracy Crosswhite novel, Close to Home, his fifth for this exclusive series.
Close to Home hits a home run with me! The novel employs a complicated cross-plot tying Seattle homicide detective Tracy Crosswhite with Navy JAG attorney Lieutenant Leah Battles after it is discovered that the 12 year old killed in a hit and run was hit by Navy Petty Officer Lazlo Trejo from the local naval base.
Involved in a sub-plot are two Violent Crimes Division detectives, Delmo Castigliano, who is grieving for his niece, Allie, who recently succumbed to a heroin overdose, and his partner, Vic Fazzio. Del is determined to find and stop the unknown person(s) pushing the drugs that killed his niece. The unusually robust and deadly heroin making the rounds creates a vicious cycle within the community and hits WAY too close to home in this extremely topical exposé of the current drug climate across the country.
Tracy and her partner, “Kins” each have their own personal health issues, but it is Kins first who must make a temporary bow out to deal with it, leaving Tracy to glean some support from Del and Vic. They don’t always have her back and she tends to doggedly pursue on her own.
Tracy meets with the African American mother of the young boy killed in the hit and run and can’t leave the case without positive closure, though it looks like there might be a jurisdictional fight between the Seattle PD and the Navy. We get to know Lt. Battles, and it doesn’t take long to root for the sympathetic Battles as well; smart, intuitive, strong, and steadfastly confident even after a crucial bit of evidence suddenly goes missing implicating her.
So much going on in this book! Intelligent and fast-paced story issues more than one “oh no!” or “uh oh” moment. There are just a couple areas of pushing back disbelief, but after all, this is fiction and some latitude might be expected. Tracy is temporarily left without a partner; although why she isn’t given a temporary back-up I’m not sure. I really appreciated getting to know the peripheral characters, all of whom became real and quelled the usual series problem of characters fully fleshed in previous installments and neglected in later submissions. This felt like a standalone and all the personalities made for a well-crafted support cast.
Dialogue, especially between team members ring all too true and puts you in the middle of the action. Tracy didn’t seem so much as the protagonist as much as one of a member of protagonists. Police procedurals, military criminal justice, as well as legal procedures were explained easily as part of the plot progression. Military jargon and acronyms were frequently used adding authenticity to scenes and were usually self-explanatory.
Tracy continues to pick at the problem of how Trejo got home after he ditches the car like a scab that won’t heal and eventually ties the whole thing together with a bit of collaboration from Lt. Battles, whose character became my favorite and feel she’ll be an obvious strong asset in #6.
The author pens a violent but satisfying and intense wrap, although you could see what was coming and it had you flipping pages with increasing speed to see that it would end satisfactorily.
I was offered this download by Thomas & Mercer and NetGalley and really appreciated the opportunity to read and review! I loved this entry in the series and am already looking forward to the next! Heartily recommended to all, especially those interested in police procedurals, military justice, legal thrillers, suspense, and mystery-thrillers. This book has it all!
Rosepoint Publishing: Five of Five Stars
The Author: Robert Dugoni is the #1 Amazon Bestselling Author with his Tracy Crosswhite series, beginning with My Sister’s Grave in 2014. He is also author of the critically acclaimed, David Sloane series, as well as other books and short stories. Mr. Dugoni is an award winner including being finalist of the 2015 and 2017 International Thriller Writer’s and a 2017 Edgar nominee by the Mystery Writers of America for The Seventh Canon. His books have been translated into languages world-wide in more than 30 countries including French, German, Italian, and Spanish. The author attended the UCLA law school and practiced law for thirteen years in San Francisco. In 1999, on his 4th wedding anniversary, they moved to Seattle so he could pursue his dreams of writing full time. For the next three years, he worked tirelessly, producing three novels and winning the 1999 and 2000 Pacific Northwest Writer’s Conference Literary Contest. Connect with him on Facebook @AuthorRobertDugoni and on Twitter @robertdugoni. ©2017 Virginia Williams