Hanging Falls (Tmber Creek K-9 Book 6)
Crooked Lane Pub.
Sept 8th, 2020
Hanging Falls by Margaret Mizushima is an excellent mystery. But readers get a bonus with this series as they learn about the bond between dog handlers and their canine partners. There is also a sub-plot that delves into the background story of the main character.
The author noted, “I had friends who had that breed. The canine trainer and officer from Washington state had a German Shepherd named Robo, which is who I based Mattie’s dog on. He saved her life a number of times. Both the fictional Robo and the real life Robo have strong drives and are wonder dogs. They are kind- hearted and can easily socialize with children, but also become fierce when finding a criminal and stolen goods. Robo knows when to become fierce by the equipment vest put on. I always need to find a way to have Robo and Cole, the vet, an intricate part of the plot. Mattie and the police detective Stella are the ones that usually put together the pieces.”
While on a scouting mission to pinpoint trail damage from flooding, officer Mattie Cobb and her K-9 partner Robo, along with game warden Glenna and her dog Moose, find a human body at the edge of a river. With the help of others in the department the body is identified. As another murdered body is found, Mattie realizes she needs the help of her colleagues as well as her boyfriend, the local veterinarian Cole Walker. Soon they become suspicious of an oddly strict religious group, although evidence also points to others in the community.
“Weather, the terrain, and the elements are like a character. They play interference with Mattie and the rest regarding their duties. In previous books I have written blizzards, rain, abd mud slides. In this book there were floods.”
Along with the murder mystery, there is also a family mystery. Mattie had taken a DNA test and submitted it on an ancestry website. Her sister also registered on the site, linking them. They finally got in touch with each other and Mattie finds that her grandmother is also alive. She is hoping to get answers as to why her parents left her at the age of two.
Besides a riveting mystery, this book allows readers to get to know the characters more. The issue of family pushes Mattie’s backstory closer to the foreground while not losing sight of the main mystery. There is also fascinating information about the training and handling of police dogs, which enhances the story.