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3.55  ·  Rating details ·  11 ratings  ·  10 reviews
On a desolate road in the Oregon high desert, an apprentice mortician stumbles upon a horrific car crash--and into a vortex of treachery, long-buried secrets, and growing menace.

Melisende Dulac is a fish out of water after relocating from the East Coast to a small community in the Oregon high desert. But just as she's beginning to think of Barlow County as home, her life
Hardcover, 328 pages
Published December 10th 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
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Average rating 3.55  · 
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Nov 26, 2019 rated it liked it
First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, W. H. Cameron, and Crooked Lane Books for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

New to the world of W. H. ‘Bill’ Cameron, I was not sure what to expect, but the dust jacket blurb had me wanting to uncover all the nuances of this book. After some troubling times in Boston, Melisende ‘Mel’ Dulac is given a generous opportunity by her estranged husband’s family. She travels to Oregon
Caitlyn Lynch
Dec 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: thriller, crime
Melisande Dulac is just trying to build a life for herself after several disastrous wrong turns. Apprentice mortician might not be a job for everyone, but it’s a chance Melisande didn’t expect to get, and she’s determined to repay the faith shown in her. Only problem… well, there are a lot of problems, but a series of events which would seem to point the finger of blame squarely at her for a crime she doesn’t even understand leave her no choice. She has to try and figure out what’s really going ...more
Megan Forrest
Oct 02, 2019 rated it liked it
This mystery is one that will pull you in. The small-town setting, the mysterious local ghost legend and the question over what really happened at the crossroads will keep you intrigued right until the end. The plot is excellent and the setting is wonderful. Unfortunately, the characters make it more difficult. The main character, Melisende, is extremely unlikable. It is difficult to empathize with her and her awkward history. There seems to be no reason for her overly mysterious history - her ...more
Laura (crofteereader)
Nov 25, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
This one started out slow and then picked up and was going really well for a while (I practically tore through 40%-80%) but then it just got so messy. There was way too much happening, too many intersecting storylines, so much going on that it went from "unlikely but okay" to "downright impossible" as the revelations poured in.

Also, can we please please please retire the broken woman trope? Melisende was like... 20 maybe as old as 25 and she'd already 1) been married, 2) been dramatically left
Sharon Grow
Dec 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Melisende Dulac Bouton’s husband, Geoffrey, is missing. With no place to go, she joins his family in Barlow County at their family mortuary. On the way to transport a recently deceased woman, Meli comes across a horrible accident involving several cars and victims. There is one adult survivor at the scene and in the field near the accident she finds a newborn baby. She transports the bodies to the morgue then later to the funeral home, only to find the bodies missing the next day. Where are the ...more
Zuzu Burford
Sep 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Melisende suffers from psychological trauma that makes for an interesting main character with a back story explaining her erratic behaviour and conversations Mel has with her deceased brother.
When the centre piece of a story is a mortuary, crooked cops, abandoned babies, a vehicle named the stiff and a printed t shirt with "take the fun out of funerals' prepare for the unexpected.
There are plenty of twists and turns to muddie the waters along the way with a great list of characters and a clever
Kari Dell
Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Complex, compelling, intensely atmospheric, with masterful writing and gritty, unique characters. Though not a western per se, this book is set in rural central Oregon's high desert and will appeal to crime/mystery readers who enjoy the dark side of writers like Craig Johnson, CJ Box, and Nevada Barr.

(I was given an advanced reader copy of this book in exchange for a fair review.)
Oct 31, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
This was a challenge to read with confusing plot lines and a really slow pace. None of the characters evoke much sympathy so it’s difficult to maintain interest in the outcome. The book did not deliver what the novel’s blurb teased.
T Olsen
Dec 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As a mystery this is a very different and a little strange story. It's also a little slow, but it actually fits the setting and the characters, and maybe surprisingly, I liked the book a lot.
rated it it was ok
Sep 08, 2019
Dec 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
CROSSROAD is a slyly appropriate title for W.H. Cameron’s latest mystery. It begins with a bang, at a traffic accident at an intersection, but the metaphor applies equally well to the main character, Melisende Dulac, a recent arrival to small-town Oregon. Melisende is at a crossroads herself, trying to put her life back together and unsure about working as an apprentice mortician. She will rub some readers the wrong way: she’s sometimes rude, she makes mistakes, and does things she shouldn’t, ...more
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W.H. Cameron is also known as Bill Cameron.
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