A Steep Price
When an activist wants to take action against the drug lords and dealers in her community things take on a dangerous turn. Vic Fazzio and his partner join forces to find out what happens when Monique Rodgers is shot down in broad daylight in South Park area. Detective Vic Fazzio and his partner Dez are on the case in order to try and find out who is behind the hit. In the same vain Tracy Crosswhite is called by her friend to look into the disappearance an Indian girl. Things get tense when she tries to learn more as her boss and Captain would like her gone since she is pregnant and trying to hide the fact until the time is right. Violent Crimes is her unit in the Seattle Police Department and this case does not belong to her at least not yet but things change and Monique Rodgers, the victim was trying to take down the drug problem in South Park but was taken out instead. Fazzio is dealing not only with the murder of Monique but the fact that Vera his wife has recurring cancer and things take on many sad and difficult turns. He would love to be able to tie Little Jimmy the son of Ricardo Luis Bernadino Jinenez, a drug runner whose father is Big Jimmy who was killed in prison six months after Faz sent him away.
Evidence comes in odd places and although the killer left nothing and the video from the area showed little they were able to see a parked car and little does the suspect know that he left his handprint on the car while getting away. Detective Andrea Gonzalez finds her way into the A Team Unit much to Tracy’s dismay as she finds her at her desk using her laptop and gaining access into her files. Angered and not happy she does report it an her concerns to her Captain who explains it to her but not exactly in the terms you would expect. Added in the person that was transferred to the C Team did not ask to leave he was told because someone on the team was retiring. Gonzalez was placed on her team and of course Tracy thinks she’s her replacement after she has her child.
Katie Pryor is her friend and works in Missing Persons and wants to involve her in finding a missing Indian girl. Aditi Dasgupta is the best friend of Kavita Mukherjee who has vanished. Yet the police department and Tracy’s boss does not want to move on it yet something is definitely off. Dasgupta graduated from the University of Washington and has moved to London after her parents arranged a marriage to a young Indian man. The first murder the suspect is caught but Gonzalez takes him out, the second changes when Kavita’s body is found in a not used well and just who killed her has yet to be determined and revealed. Her family is estranged from her because instead of coming home after graduating college she applied to medical school. Her family wanted to arrange a marriage for her and this was her act of independence.
Faz and Andrea go to where the suspect is supposedly living and the end result is tragic. Faz is framed for what happens even though he is not the shooter. Gonzalez seems on target at the time and her actions are rushed as if she just wanted to kill. Tracy realizes soon enough that Gonzalez has an agenda of her own one might be to make sure she takes her place permanently.
The author shares the final moments of Kavita as we learn about her feelings when her friend is moving out and the torment she felt. We also learn the discord with her family and her siblings except for her brother Sam. But, when Tracy and Pryor access her bank account they realize that she has not one but two and the second has almost 30 thousand dollars in it and just where it came from might take down another person’s life even before it begins. Meeting her friend and her husband we get the feeling that the newly married girl is just going through the motions and is not happy. But, when she admits to having the app on her phone find my phone or find a friend it leads them to the Coyote Trail in a park where the deadly end result of finding Kavita’s body is revealed. Wanting to keep the case Tracy calls it in to her sergeant, Billy Williams and from this point on things and events get more complicated for both her and Faz.
Then the questioning begins and Faz is sent in front of someone from the FIT unit and questioned about the shooting for Lopez. You can tell from the start that he is going to be set up for some reason even though from his graphic and vivid description you realize that Gonzalez shot Lopez, did not know if he was armed and the end happened so fast that the accounts were not exactly the same.
Tracy while this was happening had brought in two people to assess where Katia was found and the interesting facts revealed that were not found makes this case more puzzling and difficult to solve.
Tracy called in Kelly Rosa to do the autopsy and gain information about Katia’s death and she also called in Kaylee Wright in order to find out what she might find in the paths, near the well and the footprints that might help to learn just how Katia wound up in the well.
While she is processing FIT’s Larry Pinnacle questions this Fez and at the end of the interview you get the feeling that somehow he’s been set up. With information coming from his partner Del, we learn more about Gonzalez and what the witness to what happened to Lopez claims Fez said or did. Lies, corruption, betrayals and one man that stands to lose it all and someone hoping to relieve him and Tracy of their positions. While She and her partner Kins learn more about Katia and the fact that she joined a dating service in order to supplement her bank account to have money for medical school. Her roommate knew about this and although her parents refused to pay her way any longer because she did not want an arranged marriage, things got out of hand, one brother texted her and demanded she come home and obey her parents while the other just wanted her around.
Things spiral out of control when Tracy learns more about Katia’s friendship with Atiti and the fact that they both decided to join the dating service but what will happen if anyone finds out? The final scenes will keep readers on edge a Faz places his life in danger in order to free himself of the charges that someone engineered against him? Would you give up your values, mores, and life for that of your family’s traditions that they expect you to follow? Two young girls one headstrong and keeping to her own goals while the other falls short and follows the rules. An ending so tragic, so compelling and a family torn apart, lives in danger and the hope of a miracle yet to come. When Faz goes missing will anyone find him before a certain justice is enacted? Katia, Atiti, Faz, Vera, Tracy, Dan and so many others will come to learn that sometimes what you want comes with A STEEP PRICE!
Fran Lewis: Just reviews/MJ magazine
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