The fifth book in the Sgt. Windlfower mystery series by Mike Martin, was waiting for me when we got back from British Columbia at the end of September. This well written series is set in Newfoundland, Canada and Windflower is a sergeant with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
He is a Cree from Alberta who is stationed in Grand Bank, Newfoundland. In this book, A Long Ways From Home, he is doing police work all over the province in solving the mystery of some deaths related to a biker gang, the Bacchus motorcycle group. His fiancee, SheilaHillier, is running for her second term as mayor, his co-worker Tizzard could be moving from Grand Bank, his ever faithful dog Lady has an encounter with a bear, and others we have met in previous books all play an important part in this story.
Beginning: A low, heavy rumble punctured the idyllic quiet of the lonely highway outside of Deer Lake, Newfoundland. There was little other traffic, maybe because it was the middle of the day, or maybe because people knew better than to interfere with the procession of motorcycles that RCMP Sergeant Winston Windflower could see coming over the hills.
Two deaths discovered just after the gang left lead to many connections to local bikers. At the same time all of this is going on Sheila and Winston are preparing to get married. Uncle Frank and Auntie Marie are there for the wedding, and both of them are dream weavers and help Winston with some unusual dreams he has been having. One of Sheila’s relatives is due to arrive for a visit, until she goes missing, and it is then discovered she is working with the biker gang.
Page 56: Windflower got them both a cup of coffee. “Thanks” said Sheila. “Is there anything new about Carol?” “Not much,” he said. He paused to refocus and think about what he could tell Sheila. “Her motorcycle wasn’t broken down or anything, but there’s still no sign of her. We’ve put out a province-wide search notice and usually that prompts somebody to come forward with information.”
Along with good food between friends, a cutback in staffing at the RCMP station, and friends and co-workers leaving the station this book tells a wonderful story leading up to the marriage of Sheila and Winston. Throughout everything that goes down, Windflower remains calm, continues his smudge ceremonies each day, and is able to separate politics and private lives. He relies on his fellow officers to help solve the deaths and crack a huge drug ring on the island.
I love reading these stories by Mike Martin, who was born in Newfoundland and now resides in Ottawa. This book is just being released and I’m pleased and honoured that Mike lets me have an advance copy to read. If you are in Kingston on October 22, 2016 and want to get your own autographed copy and meet Mike in person be sure to go to the book signing at Novel Idea from 1 to 4 pm. If you search the title of the book you will also find many online places to purchase your own copy. I’ve written other reviews on his books and I know you will enjoy reading them too.
I always recommend reading a series in the publication order so that you get familiar with the characters and the setting. Newfoundland is one place in Canada we have not visited but it is high on my list of future trips.
Here are some more books that I’ve read and posted about.