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Heaven, my home
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A Best Book of the Year
Book Page * Financial Times * Kirkus * SheReads * Sunday Times
In this "captivating" crime novel (People) by the Edgar Award-winning author of Bluebird, Bluebird, Texas Ranger Darren Mathews is on the hunt for a missing boy -- but it's the boy's family of white supremacists who are his real target

9-year-old Levi King knew he should have left for home sooner; now he's alone in the darkness of vast Caddo Lake, in a boat whose motor just died. A sudden noise distracts him - and all goes dark.

Darren Mathews is trying to emerge from another kind of darkness; after the events of his previous investigation, his marriage is in a precarious state of re-building, and his career and reputation lie in the hands of his mother, who's never exactly had his best interests at heart. Now she holds the key to his freedom, and she's not above a little maternal blackmail to press her advantage.

An unlikely possibility of rescue arrives in the form of a case down Highway 59, in a small lakeside town where the local economy thrives on nostalgia for ante-bellum Texas - and some of the era's racial attitudes still thrive as well. Levi's disappearance has links to Darren's last case, and to a wealthy businesswoman, the boy's grandmother, who seems more concerned about the fate of her business than that of her grandson.

Darren has to battle centuries-old suspicions and prejudices, as well as threats that have been reignited in the current political climate, as he races to find the boy, and to save himself.

"Locke's work is political in the most impactful, necessary sense, as she tells stories of crimes both personal and systemic, all while showing a complete mastery of suspense, plotting, and style." --CrimeReads
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Booklist Review
After a long undercover stint, African American Texas Ranger Darren Matthews (introduced in Bluebird, Bluebird, 2017) takes a new approach in the Rangers' case against the Aryan Brotherhood. Levi King, a nine-year-old with family ties to the Brotherhood, has disappeared. Levi was last seen on Caddo Lake in Jefferson, a moss-draped hamlet steeped in antebellum history. In Jefferson, Darren confirms his gut feeling that the disappearance goes deeper than family dysfunction. Levi had been living in an informal trailer park in Hopetown, property deeded as a free blacks' community during Reconstruction. Decades of economic hardship have reduced the once-thriving community to a handful of residents led by elderly Leroy Page. To fund Hopetown's upkeep, Page leased land to Levi's grandfather and watched helplessly as Levi's mother legally assumed the lease, and her boyfriend turned the tract into a white-power settlement. Page, the last person to see Levi, becomes the prime suspect after revealing a recent confrontation over racist graffiti. Darren isn't Page's biggest fan, but the disappearance of a visiting real-estate attorney and the heavily enforced secrecy of the town's steely matriarch don't gel with the straightforward revenge theory. This is a beautifully written and instantly gripping crime novel; Darren Matthews is brutally honest both in his troubled personal life, as he deals with a deteriorating marriage, and on the job, as he faces down both casual hatred and the more virulent variety promulgated by the Aryan Brotherhood.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Locke is one of the emerging stars of crime fiction, and her latest is already attracting attention on social media.--Christine Tran Copyright 2019 Booklist
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