by Bruce TierneyJanuary, 2004
A husband's secret life
Another mystery debut, Jodi Compton's The 37th Hour, marks the beginning of a series featuring Minneapolis Sheriff Sarah Pribek, who specializes in missing persons cases. Still, it will come as a huge surprise to her to find that her husband has gone missing, and that the trail is as cold as a Minnesota daybreak. Doggedly, she pursues the smallest leads, each of which raises more questions than it answers. Apparently, Pribek's beloved husband exists (or existed) in a shadow world of half-truths, secrets and betrayal. As the investigation continues, it grows unclear whether she would want him back, even on the off chance she is able to turn him up. The 37th Hour is not a novel for fans of light mysteries (Janet Evanovich and Sue Grafton readers need not apply). Rather, it mines the darker side of the genre, territory familiar to readers of Jim Thompson, Andrew Vachss and James Lee Burke. An excellent debut novel, from an author worth watching!