Death of the River Master by Allana Martin
A Texana Jones Mystery (Texana Jones Mysteries)

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Synopsis

Allana Martin's sixth color-filled mystery, set in a remote spot on the Mexican-American border, opens with an unexpected and terrible blow for trading-post owner Texana Jones. Her husband, Clay, a popular veterinarian with patients on both sides of the (almost dry) Rio Grande, has been arrested for the murder of the river master, the official in charge of allocating the region's scan water supply under the terms of the binational agreement. Now Clay is in jail awaiting trial in a Mexican court.

Having lived all her life on the fringe of Mexico, Texana is anything but naive about their harsh legal system - where there is no such thing as bail, habeas corpus, probation, or early release. The fate of the accused is not in the hands of a jury, but the hands of a single judge, a judge who may be fair, or who may have self-interests that will sway the verdict. And, unfortunately, the latter is more likely.

Determined to find incontrovertible evidence of Clay's innocence that even the most venial judge would not dare to overlook, she delves into the river master's background - at no small risk. Whoever is behind all this is determined to hold on to the spoils of the effort. Texana must use all her senses, her ingenuity, and her courage to free her blameless husband from the coils of the Mexican judicial snare and the enemy behind it.

Martin's firm hold on the unusual lives of the people who live - and try to make a living against many odds - in the small area where these stories are set pulls readers into a world they never knew. The strength and reality of Texana Jones's extraordinary common sense and human understanding convince her readers that she's their friend, one whose adventures they share.

 

About Allana Martin

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Allana Martin lives in Marfa, Texas, with her husband. Her first novel, Death of a Healing Woman, won the Western Writers of America Medicine Pipe Bearer Award. She is a former journalism teacher.
 
Published April 1, 2007 by Minotaur Books. 256 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Death of the River Master

Kirkus Reviews

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Even though Texana Jones’s trading post is the closest tiny Polvo comes to big-city culture, the reunion is beset by nonstop problems—as befits a video on such an ill-starred project as Panchito, whose technical advisor, Jacinto Trejo, had survived a childhood as a Villa conscript only to meet hi...

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Publishers Weekly

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When a travel writer dismisses her own town of Polvo as "a hot, dreary little place full of barking cur dogs," Texana, who runs a trading post, agrees but adds, "On a clear day the sky above is pale turquoise, the dust motes turn the harsh sunlight golden, and the shadows of mesquite leaves dance...

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Publishers Weekly

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The fourth adventure (after Death of an Evangelista) for Texana Jones, who owns a trading post, starts off on the right foot, with a prologue providing an 1852 description of the mystifying ""Marfa Lights."" These glowing images of the desert have long fascinated visitors and locals alike, and sh...

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Publishers Weekly

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Although an evangelist is indeed murdered in this atmospheric but unfocused third adventure (after Death of a Saint Maker) of trading post-owner Texana Jones, her death seems almost an afterthought.

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Publishers Weekly

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Those thirsty for a refreshing read will welcome Martin's sixth mystery (after 2001's Death of the Last Villista) to feature hip trading-post owner Texana Jones, which focuses on some all too real problems along the arid Texas-Chihuahua border.

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The Best Reviews

Texanna is unable to let past secrets stay buried and is determined, for her mother's sake, to find out who killed Trejo, but somebody wants past secrets to stay hidden.

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The Best Reviews

When Clay and Texana Jones, the owners of Texana's Trading Post and a veterinary practice go across the Mexican border to the town of Ojinaga to dine with friends at a local restaurant, Clay is arrested.

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Reader Rating for Death of the River Master
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