by Judy Bruce
Series: Wind #2
Published by: Merriam Press
Purchase: Amazon | B&N
In the second installment of the misadventures of Megan Docket, she learns of the investigation of meth dealing in the area. A gut feeling forces her to question the motives of a DEA agent residing in the area. As she snoops on the agent, she becomes protective of a young teen and a young autistic, who works at the local diner. The meth use in the community causes the deaths of two friends and ensnares the local residents in the drug trade. Meanwhile, discord with her husband Brian creates problems at home. When the DEA agent and the chief of police commit murder, Megan uncovers the truth. After she impulsively takes action against the men, it blackens her soul and plunges her into a personal hell. Burdened with grief over the community tragedies and her own guilt, she seeks redemption.
Alone in the Wind by Judy Bruce is the second novel in her Wind series. Bruce shares the misadventures of Megan Docket, a lawyer and self-professed snoop. Set against the landscape of rugged, rural Western Nebraska, Bruce combines mystery, character growth and suspense into this small-town series. If you love a cozy but want a mystery with kick, Bruce is an author to try.
Megan Docket is one tough little cookie who doesn’t take any sass and will defend those she cares about or perceives as threatened. Her intuition tells her when something is off and she does not hesitate to investigate. In Alone in the Wind, Megan struggles with marital woes, town troubles and living with the consequences of her own actions and motives.
Bruce is wonderful at weaving a compelling story and drawing the reader into its world. As I read, the cliffs, prairies and small-town came to life for me. I felt Megan’s emotions, admired her wiliness to help others and her protective nature. Bruce revealed more about our heroine while sharing threads on townsfolk. An undercover FBI/DEA investigation involving Meth has Megan on high alert. Megan trusts her gut and together with help from friends and family, she begins to piece together the mystery. While at times I felt Megan drew hard lines in the sand once she had formed an opinion, I respected her and her intentions. Her actions towards the end of the book left a bad taste in my mouth. Even though the author did, an excellent job of showing Megan’s own struggles with these actions it left me angry and disappointed. View Spoiler »Megan made a split decision to play jury, judge and executioner. I felt she overstepped, especially since she is a lawyer. Megan suffers for it, but it angered me. « Hide Spoiler
While the mystery/thriller was the focus if Alone in the Wind, Bruce weaved in home life issues. She also shared the lives of those affected by the case and I enjoyed these threads. One thread was that of a young autistic man and his first job in a local dinner. It is clear Bruce is well-educated with his disorder and I fell in love with Davy. Death, friends helping friends, and some of Megan’s cases made both the town and characters genuine and tugged at my heartstrings. While the plot was intense as the investigation heated up, Bruce did a wonderful job of providing ordinary, mundane moments that added depth to both the story and the characters.
Alone in the Wind was in some ways stronger than its predecessor. I devoured it and despite being upset with Megan’s actions, I am eager to return to this small-town.
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