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Blood Junction    by Caroline Carver order for
Blood Junction
by Caroline Carver
Order:  USA  Can
Warner, 2003 (2001)
Hardcover, Paperback, Audio, CD

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* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

The story opens in 1952 with the horrific massacre of members of an Aboriginal family in Cooinda, Australia, henceforth to be known to the locals as Blood Junction. It then fast forwards to 1999, when we meet reporter India Kane stuck at the side of the desert road with a broken down car. Indi's on her way to Cooinda to go on a riding safari with her best friend Lauren, also an investigative reporter and supposedly on the trail of a hot story. Lauren has enticed Indi to Cooinda with the promise of a meeting with a long-lost relative.

A BMW with smoked-glass windows passes without stopping, unheard of in the Aussie outback. Then a young man named Tiger gives Indi a ride into Cooinda and on to her destination at the Goodmans. There's no sign of Lauren and the Goodmans are away, but their son settles Indi in before heading off on a bushwalking trip. Then all hell breaks loose. The townspeople have found two dead bodies and are ready to lynch Indi as a murderer.

After an interlude in jail and a spot of police brutality she's out on bail and determined to discover what really happened. She uncovers nefarious doings at the nearby Karamyde Cosmetics Research Institute, and the involvement of descendants of the Aborigines who were murdered in the 1950s. Indi collects an assortment of allies, including young Polly; Lost Generation police officer Jerome; Lauren's husband Scott; and a renegade cop named Mikey who takes a great deal of convincing to accept her innocence.

Blood Junction is an exciting romantic thriller with non-stop (Wild West Aussie style) action and violence. Though it's often improbable, it's a great ride, with ongoing surprises for both heroine and reader. Just suspend your disbelief a little and hop on.

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