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Hid from Our Eyes: A Clare Fergusson/Russ Van Alstyne Mystery    by Julia Spencer-Fleming order for
Hid from Our Eyes
by Julia Spencer-Fleming
Order:  USA  Can
Minotaur, 2020 (2020)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Julia Spencer-Fleming's Hid from Our Eyes is the ninth episode in her sterling series starring Episcopal rector Clare Fergusson (who is also a National Guard helicopter pilot) and Millers Kill Police Chief Russ Van Alstyne. At this stage in the series, Clare and Russ are married, and Clare is struggling to juggle her myriad responsibilities with the care of their baby, while still recovering from addiction.

This episode is especially intriguing as it not only involves a cold case (from 1972) but also a very cold one (from 1952), each with no known cause of death. Russ's two predecessors were involved (and readers gain their perspectives), and Russ was a prime suspect for a time in the 1972 killing. Now there's a very similar case, a young woman found dead in a party dress, in the present day. Could these cases possibly be linked?

The story moves back and forth in time, revealing the past investigations (and the police chiefs who led them, Harry McNeil and Jack Liddle) as the present one progresses. At the same time, Russ has to deal with a movement afoot to dissolve the Millers Kin police department and rely on state police, to save money.

As in the previous episode, Officer Hadley Knox (an appealing new character in the series) aids the investigation, while coping with harassment from fellow officers. Complicating matters, her jailed ex has initiated a civil suit against her, Officer Kevin Flyn (now working undercover with state police) and the Millers Kin Police Department.

As we expect, Russ solves all three cases, but this episode ends with a big change in his life - and on a cliffhanger for Hadley and Kevin. I look forward to more in this consistently excellent series.

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