The Known Dead

Donald Harstad

The second fast paced quirky police procedural thriller by former deputy sheriff Don Harstad, following the success of Eleven Days. This time Deputy Sheriff Carl Houseman is on the trail of the leader of a splinter group of US extreme right-wing terrorists causing mayhem in Nation County, Iowa.

A routine surveillance of a marijuana patch in a state park in Nation County, Iowa suddenly turns into a shoot-out resulting in one police officer and one old doper dead. As Deputy Sheriff Houseman embarks on a search for the killers, a 911 emergency call comes in from the Stritch farm where shots have been fired and help is needed fast. A hostage situation develops as Stritch and his family are holed up on their farm. When they are finally forced out at gunpoint, two suspects, both armed, have escaped across the cornfields and at the farm a huge weapons cache is discovered. One of the men is known as Gabe and suddenly Carl Houseman, FBI agent Hester Gorse, and all the highly individual characters that made Eleven Days so entertaining, find themselves on the trail of a splinter group of right wing extremists whose training exercise was disturbed by a routine marijuana surveillance.

Reviews of The Known Dead

    • ‘Harstad’s books are terrific and really capture the atmosphere of small-town America, where the twentieth century almost seems to have slipped by unnoticed.’ Independent on Sunday
    • ‘Harstad’s first-hand experience ensures his storytelling always rings true.’ Arena
    • ‘The Big Thaw, set in the dead of winter in a Fargo-like mid-west, is American procedural writing at its best.’ Guardian

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