Antler Dust and Buried by the Roan

These two are the first couple of novels in the Allison Coil mystery series by Mark Stevens (who I got to work with for a while this past summer while helping out a bit with the Rocky Mountain Writer podcast he does for RMFW–well worth listening to if one writes at all, by the way.)

These were thoroughly enjoyable, with interesting puzzles, well-drawn characters and quick-paced action.  What I liked best, though, was the setting–the Rocky Mountains seemed as beautiful in this book as they look from my backyard on a clear day.  I also loved the strong friendship that develops between Allison and Trudy, a woman she meets in the course of her first investigation.  I don’t often find strong female friendships in novels that aren’t labeled “Women’s Fiction,” and it’s nice to find one here.

I’ll read more Allison Coil mysteries–I just have to wait until my book budget recovers from Christmas.