Las Cruces wasn’t a place most travelers would think to stop. But after private investigator Lew Archer plays the good samaritan and picks up a bloodied hitchhiker, he finds himself in town for a few days awaiting a murder inquest. A hijacked truck full of liquor and an evidence box full of marijuana, $20,000 from a big-time bank heist by a small-time crook, corruption, adultery, incest, prodigal daughters, and abused wives all make the little town seem a lot more interesting than any guide book ever could. And as the murder rate rises, Archer finds himself caught up in mystery where everyone is a suspect and everyone’s a victim.

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