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Desert Cut: A Lena Jones Mystery    by Betty Webb order for
Desert Cut
by Betty Webb
Order:  USA  Can
Poisoned Pen, 2008 (2008)
Hardcover, Audio, CD
* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Betty Webb's newest offering will set your teeth on edge. She details a crime that goes on all over the world, while authorities turn their backs. After all, Webb explains, it's only young girls who are affected and they are not important enough to cry over.

Lena Jones, PI in the Tucson area, travels to Los Perdidos on a break from work. She and her lover find a young girl's mutilated body half buried in the desert - and therein lies the tale. Because of Lena's rough childhood, she identifies with the girl and vows to get to the bottom of her death. This leads her to ask questions of authorities, religious leaders, parents and children, as well as immigrants from Africa and the Near East. She is shot at and attacked with a knife. But Lena is made of stern stuff and solves the mystery of why that small child died.

Author Betty Webb has the knack of turning real events into excellent fiction while at the same time enlightening her readers as to what is happening. I won't reveal the reason for the shock that will run through the reader when the cause of death is shown. Needless to say, I was horrified. Desert Cut is a book well worth reading for its excellent writing and gripping story. Also, because it addresses an issue that is being swept under the rug and should see the light of day. Thank you, Betty Webb for caring.

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