Attorney Mary Crow is back in her home town of Pisgah County, North Carolina, hoping to rekindle her romance with former love Jonathan Walkingstick. Professionally, Mary plans to concentrate on civil law after years as an Atlanta prosecutor, but when a young Cherokee is accused of murdering his beautiful white girlfriend, Mary finds herself on Ridge Standingdeer's defense team.

Although the case threatens to derail Mary's blossoming relationship with Jonathan, honor binds her to aid in defending a fellow Cherokee. While searching for evidence to exonerate Ridge, Mary learns that Pisgah County may have a serial rapist on the loose.

As she faces prejudice and the good-ol'-boy network of the rural South, Mary proves a captivating protagonist. Bissell contrasts the earthy beauty of the North Carolina mountains with the true evil of a murderer. The mystery and suspense are eerily entrancing, and there's even a touch of the supernatural. (Apr., 352 pp., $23.95)
Reviewed by: 
Sheri Melnick