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    DUST TO DUST by Tami Hoag

    Bantam Books, September 2000

    Sam Kovac and his partner Nikki Liska are supposed to rubber-stamp the obvious suicide and move on with their jobs. There is plenty for Minneapolis homocide detectives to bother themselves with and the hanging death of a gay cop is not high on the list. Still, something doesn't ring quite right. The more they dig, the more Kovac and Liska start to find things out of place.

    As with any police force, Minneapolis has its share of gay-hating cops. The dead cop, Andy Fallon, had been investigating the harassment and death of another gay cop. Could the deaths have been connected? Kovac and Liska can't believe in any vast conspiracy, but they can't believe the easy answers the department wants, either.

    In DUST TO DUST, Tami Hoag has created a driving police procedural. Both Kovac and Liska are fully drawn characters with motivations and fears that go far beyond simply solving the job. Their work feels authentic as they question perps, investigate potential links, and call up favors. A few of the clues feel a little forced. Hoag never adequately explains the reason the word Sorry was left on Andy Fallon's mirror. Still, the compelling pace of the novel doesn't allow readers to stop and take note of these minor incongruities until they've put down the book. Hoag is a talented author and DUST TO DUST is a mature and terrific read.

    See more reviews of novels by Tami Hoag.

    Four Stars

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