From Publishers Weekly
Wings Ranch near Reno, owned by Jeep Reed, who served as a WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilot) during WWII, provides the appealing backdrop for the intriguing first in a new, canine-centered series from bestseller Brown (Cat of the Century). One of Nevada's wealthiest women, Jeep has outlived two "life partners," Daniel Marks and Dorothy Jocham, and welcomes a visit from her great-niece, former Wall Street banker Magdalene "Mags" Rogers. Suspicious explosions of local water pumps disturb their peace, along with an environmentalist's shooting "suicide" and a pump company employee's disappearance. Jeep, Mags, and their two dogs--King, a shepherd mix, and Baxter, a wire-haired dachshund--also discover a really cold corpse and, among the bones, a 19th-century Russian "Star of Guard" ring buried in Jeep's barn. The water issues subplot slows the action at times and the dogs don't have enough to do, but the search for the skeleton's identity will keep most readers turning the pages.
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Mags (for Magdalena) has left New York City, where the financial meltdown caused her to lose her banking job, and has moved to her great-aunt Jeep’s ranch in Nevada, not too far away from Reno. She has brought her wirehaired dachshund Baxter, who has to get along with Jeep’s German shepherd–mix King. The two women and their dogs first get drawn into the conflict between Jeep’s rural neighbors and Silver State Resource Management, a corporation that wants to control all the water rights in the area. They (women and dogs) investigate when SSRM pumps explode in what amounts to domestic terrorism, and then an SSRM executive disappears. This is the first in a new mystery series featuring Baxter and King and their humans; Brown narrates a good portion of the novel from the dogs’ point of view. The crime plot plays out at a leisurely pace, but the conflict over water rights is just as compelling as the mystery, making this a satisfying read not only for genre fans but also for anyone who cares about the environment. --Kat Kan