Former army lieutenant Hardesty Arnaud has returned to her hometown of St. Martine, Louisiana and stepped into the role of police chief. She has her work cut out for her when the small, sleepy town is inundated with murders.

FBI agent Nick Brannigan has landed one of the biggest cases of his career. His key witness can take down an entire mob family… That is, until the witness is murdered and a federal marshall goes missing.

Hardie is livid when she discovers the body of a key Mafia player in her neck of the woods. Nick Brannigan showing up is just the icing on the cake. Hardie is positive he knows more than he's letting on.

Visually graphic, grotesque scenes left my squeamish sensibilities a bit offended. However, once I got past the blood and carnage, the light humor shared between Hardie and Nick was enjoyable.

Thoroughly intrigued by the mystery surrounding the various characters and crime, I couldn't help racing along, eagerly anticipating finding the criminal mastermind behind the murders. If you don't mind some gory scenes, SOUTHERN COMFORT is fine reading. (Jul., 303 pp., $8.95)

Reviewed by: 
T.L. Burton