The more things change, the more they stay the same in Penns River. Stush Napierkowski has retired, replaced by retired Boston PD captain Brendan Sullivan. Nancy Snyder was promoted to deputy chief over several more experienced candidates. New officers join the department.
Crime pays no attention. A woman dies in a hit-and-run the night before Sullivan officially takes over. Patty Polcyn was seen by plenty of people while in the company of a man no one recognized, who may—or may not—drive a car consistent with tire marks left at the scene. The investigation demands an intensive search that requires manpower Penns River doesn’t have and loses steam as the day-to-day concerns of police work require immediate attention: domestic disputes, petty theft, not so petty theft, armed robbery, a visit from the Dixie mafia to shake down the town’s moonshine dealers, and a few things that are the responsibility of the police only because no one else takes care of them.
Sullivan doesn’t want the first homicide on his watch to be an open file and tasks Teresa Shimp, the most junior detective in a squad already down one, to spend as much time as she can on it. It’s Teresa’s first gig as primary homicide investigator. She sticks with it, going back over things to see what might make more sense as her knowledge of the case’s facts expands until she has a eureka moment.
Sullivan’s approach differs from Stush’s enough to cause friction in the department, and a personal dilemma for lead detective Ben “Doc” Dougherty. Doc also has his parents’ failing health, a dramatic change in the domestic situation of two young men he has become close to, and finding an old friend has colored outside the lines vying for his attention.
Penns River’s cast changes, as do the roles they play. The job is still the job.
Praise for LEAVING THE SCENE:
“A small town, a killing, and a cast of characters tough enough to make Elmore Leonard grin. Dana King’s Leaving the Scene is a slow burn that will leave you wanting more. A great read!” —Bruce Robert Coffin, bestselling author of the Detective Byron mysteries
“Great read—ensemble cast, police procedural in a tough, blue-collar-town, with good reminders of classic Ed McBain. Gritty and authentic detail, with realistic, interesting characters and crimes.” —Dale T. Phillips, author of A Memory of Grief and A Darkened Room
“Dana King’s Leaving the Scene delivers the goods—a procedural packed with smart dialogue, sharp plotting, and a vivid humanity that brings to mind the best of McBain, Wambaugh, and Connelly.” —James D.F. Hannah, Shamus Award-winning author of the Henry Malone series.
“With interweaving plots and quickfire dialogue, the relentless pace of Leaving the Scene is highly addictive.” —Caro Ramsay, Dagger-shortlisted author of the Anderson and Costello mysteries