Detective Alex Morrow discovers that the darkest secrets never stay buried as she investigates the criminal underbelly of a seemingly tranquil seaside town.
For reasons she can't quite explain, Alex Morrow is addicted to watching surveillance footage of Roxanna Fuentecilla -- a gorgeous Spanish mother of two, in a tempestuous relationship with her boyfriend, who recently relocated to Glasgow under mysterious circumstances. She is also Morrow's prime suspect in an investigation that resembles a soap opera, filled with glamorous jetsetters and enough money to interest the highest levels of law enforcement. Until Roxanna vanishes.
Morrow traces Roxanna's steps to Helensburgh, a sleepy, picturesque seaside community. But behind the idyllic Victorian homes and quaint storefronts, darkness lurks. Home to a man with blood on his hands who is haunted by guilt, a mysterious woman with ulterior motives back in town for the first time in decades, a sexually frustrated restaurateur looking to blow off steam, and a crew of vicious small-time gangsters blindly following orders, it's a town ruled by base instincts where no one is quite what they seem. And it's the perfect place to get rid of someone.
When she uncovers an unsettling connection to Roxanna's job back in Glasgow, Morrow suspects that her missing person is more than a white-collar criminal on the lam -- she may also be a victim caught up in a sophisticated conspiracy that stretches far beyond Helensburgh and is more personal than Morrow ever imagined. As the truth rises to the surface and the conflicts that lie beneath Helensburgh's calm waters threaten to explode, Morrow must find Roxanna before any hope of solving the case disappears with her.
A gripping tale of greed, power, and vengeance, Blood, Salt, Water is a masterful crime novel from Denise Mina that confirms her reputation as "one of the genre's brights stars" (George Pelecanos).
Roxanna Fuentecilla, the suspicious character at the center of Mina's riveting sixth novel featuring Glasgow Det. Insp. Alex Morrow (after 2013's The Red Road), has been under loose surveillance. The Scottish police suspect her of shady business dealings involving her insurance agency and possibly having a hand in stealing or laundering 7 million. When one of Roxanna's children reports her missing and her cell phone records place her in Helensburgh, Morrow and her colleague, Det. Constable Howard McGrain, pretend to be Missing Persons officers and travel to the sleepy coastal town. Meanwhile, two Helensburgh men, Iain Fraser and Tommy Farmer, murder a woman and toss her body in the local loch. And the unexpected return of Susan Grierson, who spent 20 years in the U.S., brings back long-buried memories for Iain, not all of them comfortable. As Morrow discovers troubling evidence of Roxanna's widespread dirty dealings, more bodies turn up in Helensburgh. Morrow's incarcerated half-brother, gangster Danny McGrath, adds a wild card to an installment that exposes the bleakness of small-town Scotland as skillfully as it does the bustling mean streets of Glasgow.