Not many people in Midbury especially liked F. Y. Grimsley, a rancher with twenty thousand acres and five hundred head of cattle. Still, when Grimsley is found dead on his back doorstep with a mysterious gash on his head, Chief Chick Charleston and his crew have to use their dusty detective skills to root out his killer. They are aided by Deputy Jason Beard, who, though he grew up in Midbury, has been away for two years at college, waiting to go out into the “real world.”
In their small Montana community, Charleston and Beard must conduct their investigations delicately, ignoring local prejudice, sifting through gossip and speculation, enduring the pressures of higher-ups, dealing with some less-than-savory characters, and eliciting information from those who would prefer not to talk. And, not surprisingly, things get worse before they get better. A second body is discovered, and relations between the sheriff, the Indian reservation, and the town deteriorate until finding the murderer becomes more than just a matter of enforcing the law—it becomes crucial to keeping the peace in this small ranching community.
With an entertaining cast of characters and a vivid sense of Montana ranch land, The Genuine Article is a page-turning mystery of surprising warmth and humor.