Allana Martin's sixth color-filled mystery, set in a remote spot on the Mexican-American border, opens with an unexpected and terrible blow for trading-post owner Texana Jones. Her husband, Clay, a popular veterinarian with patients on both sides of the (almost dry) Rio Grande, has been arrested for the murder of the river master, the official in charge of allocating the region's scan water supply under the terms of the binational agreement. Now Clay is in jail awaiting trial in a Mexican court. Having lived all her life on the fringe of Mexico, Texana is anything but naive about their harsh legal system - where there is no such thing as bail, habeas corpus, probation, or early release. The fate of the accused is not in the hands of a jury, but the hands of a single judge, a judge who may be fair, or who may have self-interests that will sway the verdict. And, unfortunately, the latter is more likely. Determined to find incontrovertible evidence of Clay's innocence that even the most venial judge would not dare to overlook, she delves into the river master's background - at no small risk. Whoever is behind all this is determined to hold on to the spoils of the effort. Texana must use all her senses, her ingenuity, and her courage to free her blameless husband from the coils of the Mexican judicial snare and the enemy behind it. Martin's firm hold on the unusual lives of the people who live - and try to make a living against many odds - in the small area where these stories are set pulls readers into a world they never knew. The strength and reality of Texana Jones's extraordinary common sense and human understanding convince her readers that she's their friend, one whose adventures they share.
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by Allana Martin
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
by Agatha Christie
by Betsy Byars
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