Friday, March 3, 2017

Marilyn Meredith Presents Intriguing Seldom Traveled!

 "There is a road in the hearts of all of us,
hidden and seldom traveled, which leads
to the unknown secret place."
--Chief Luther Standing Bear

The dispatcher reported an escaped fugitive had been spotted headed for the small mountain community of Bear Creek. Depute Tempe Crabtree was ordered to cooperate with the federal and county authorities. It was her first day back from a vacation which had included her son's wedding. She'd also received a report of a missing woman. Welcome home...
She waited for him to give her other instructions, but he ignored her. Since she was an Indian, she was surprised he didn't want her to help track the suspect. She guessed he didn't want her on the search, perhaps because of her ethnic background, or maybe he didn't like women in law enforcement. It certainly wasn't the first time she'd run into such prejudices. "Anything else you'd like me to do?
"We have it covered." He didn't bother looking at her...
Since she wasn't needed, Tempe decided to check on the whereabouts of the missing woman. She'd been given an address of a large vacation home farther up in the mountains. It belonged to the wealthy Konstanzer family... According to the report she'd received, it was the granddaughter, Mariah Konstanzer, who was missing. Tempe knew little about Mariah except that at times her photo turned up in magazines like "People" on the arm of a movie star or famous businessman...
The Konstanzer vacation home perched atop a roky knoll. Tall pine trees poked through odd places, standing like irregular sentinels. Light poured out of the large front window that looked out over the forest below. Tempe drove up the circular driveway to the front of the house...Only seconds passed before the door was opened. A woman in her mid-thirties perhaps, with chin-length blond hair..."I'm so glad you're here. I drove to Dennison to pick up supplies and run some errands. I've been gone several hours, and when I got back, I couldn't find Mariah. It's weird because I have the car we rented at the airport."
"I'm Deputy Crabtree, and you are?"
"Oh, sorry. Amy, Amy Bennett. I'm Mariah's personal assistant..."
Tempe finished her coffee and stood. "Show me around the house. We'll make a thorough search. Let's begin with Brogan's room..."
"What's next?"
"A room similar to this one."
It turned out to be another with a double bed, a small dresser and an empty closet.
"Across the way is a utility room. We keep all the linens in there, dust mop and cleaning supplies for upstairs."
"Let's see it."
Amy pulled open the door and screamed.

Seldom Traveled
Tempe Crabtree Mystery Series

By Marilyn Meredith

This is my first time reading Marilyn Meredith, but I've found that I've always enjoyed books with Native American characters. I love the spirituality normally displayed and this book was no exception. In fact, the climatic ending made this a true winner for me. If my time permitted, I'd be reading the entire series...

Tempe Crabtree is a very cool lady and an excellent officer of the law. She is married to a minister of a local church, so he is often the one waiting at home for his wife, and more often, praying for her safety. And much prayer was needed because there was an escaped fugitive, a missing woman who was found dead--murdered, and a raging forest fire in which Tempe was caught! 

Initially, Tempe was assigned the responsibility of interviewing persons of interest; however, so many emergencies were happening at one time, that Tempe moved deeper and deeper into the investigation, finding clues that had been overlooked, including a potential threat note that had fallen and become hidden...

And through it all, readers watch her intelligence and savvy shine through as she calmly evaluates each situation and then acts to get through the latest crisis, saving others from the danger...

I was especially intrigued by the murdered victim's life as well as the fugitive, which surprised me because I've normally geared to watch the main character--which of course I did. But the murdered woman had led such a sad, to me, life as she'd taken it as a goal to break up present relationships or marriages by going after, and succeeding in seducing the involved man. Readers have to wonder what was so special about her since the men fell for her so totally... Only then to have her leave them and move on to another potential conquest. Was this the reason that she'd been killed? Of course, there were many women--those deserted or divorced now--or even her companion who she treated constantly as just a hired employee... And when her last lover came to town to try to reconcile, surely his surprised look of her death was fake...

The fugitive had broken into the cabin where the woman had been murdered and was almost caught when Crabtree went back to continue her investigation. Had he killed her during his escape? But she later met up with him and faced him through a very dangerous situation...

Another wonderfully drawn character was Nick Two John who owned an Inn and with whom Crabtree often interacted in the course of her duties... Readers can almost believe he is a shaman as he prepared tea or something to eat, seeming to know in advance she will be coming and need sustenance. Then as she spent time sharing about what case she was dealing with, Two John would leave her with a message to ponder and hopefully remember and act upon.

Surely, with Two John and her husband constantly keeping Tempe in their thoughts, she was walking a spiritual walk... And her fellow officers were right there when needed to support her. While graphic violence is downplayed in the books, Tempe still finds herself in life-and-death situations and finds her way out again...Kudos to the author for bringing Tempe Crabtree to life for her readers!

The setting, the characters, and the mystery come together in a wonderful blend! Grab a cup of tea! I read the book in one sitting and could easily have kept on reading if all of the mysteries hadn't been solved... I was hooked and so hope I get the chance to read more of this fascinating series!

I found this singer, who I believe 
could also make a wonderful Tempe Crabtree. 
What do you think?


I'm the author of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree mystery series and the Rocky Bluff P.D. crime series under the name, F. M. Meredith. Reading and writing have been a part of me since I was a little girl--a very long time ago. I love to hear from readers who have enjoyed my books. I've made many new and good friends among the readers and writers at various mystery conventions and conferences.

Hubby and I live in the foothills of the Sierra much like the place where my heroine Tempe Crabtree lives. And we once lived in a beach community that resembles Rocky Bluff. 

I've also written several stand-alone books for Kindle and paper.

I love to hear from my readers or have them visit my webpage at

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