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About Michael McGarrity
With the publication of Tularosa in 1996, Michael McGarrity turned to writing full time. Many of his novels have been national best sellers. He holds a BA with distinction in psychology and a master's degree in clinical social work. As an undergraduate, he held a Ford Foundation Scholarship at the University of New Mexico. Additionally, he is an honor graduate of the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy.
His career in criminal justice spanned over twenty-five years and included creating treatment programs for drug offenders, supervising outreach services for at-risk juveniles, and re-establishing mental health services for the Department of Corrections after the infamous 1980 riot at the New Mexico Penitentiary. As a Santa Fe County deputy sheriff, he worked as a patrol officer, training and planning supervisor, community relations officer, and was the lead investigator of the sex crimes unit, which he established. Additionally, he taught courses at the New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy, served as a caseworker and investigator for the Public Defender's District Office, and conducted investigations for a state government agency. In 1980 he was named New Mexico Social Worker of the Year and in 1987 was recognized by the American Legion as Police Officer of the Year.
In 2004 he received the New Mexico Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts -- Literature. He is also the 2015 recipient of the Frank Waters Exemplary Literary Achievement Award and the 2015 Santa Fe Mayor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts – Literature. He has been instrumental in establishing the Hillerman-McGarrity Creative Writing Scholarship at the University of New Mexico, the Richard Bradford Memorial Creative Writing Scholarship at the Santa Fe Community College, and the N. Scott Momaday Creative Writing Scholarship at the Institute of American Indian Arts.
He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico with his wife Emily Beth (Mimi).
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Clayton Istee, son of retired police chief Kevin Kerney, goes up against an elusive Mexican hitman in a mesmerizing story of murder, revenge, and redemption.
Given a chance to salvage his law enforcement career, Dona Ana County Sheriff’s Detective Clayton Istee catches a bizarre late-night double homicide at a Las Cruces hotel. Both victims, a man and a woman, have been scalped with their throats cut.
The murders show all the signs of a signature hit, but national and state crime databases reveal no similar profiles. Digging into the victims’ backgrounds, Clayton discovers that six months prior the couple had walked out of a nearby casino with $200,000 of a high-stakes gambler’s money.
He also learns the crime had been hushed up by an undercover federal DEA agent, who resurfaces and recruits Clayton for a dangerous mission to seize the Mexican drug lord responsible for the killings.
Thrust into the nightmare world of borderland drug wars and corrupt cops, Clayton duels with a cunning assassin poised to kill him and his family in a ferocious climax to the Kevin Kerney series that is sure to stun.
"Mystery fans shouldn't miss Tularosa. Michael McGarrity's first entry in the field moves like lightning. An ex-cop, he knows what he's writing about—and how to write it." —Tony Hillerman
It's been two years since an on-the-job shooting forced ex-Santa Fe chief of detectives Kevin Kerney to retire. He is drawn back into action when Terry Yazzi, his former partner and the man responsible for his wounds, pleads for Kerney's help. Yazzi's son, a soldier, has disappeared in the barren desert surrounding the White Sands Missile Range.
Kerney's investigation resurrects the long-forgotten thrill of the hunt—and other emotions surface after meeting the tough-but-beautiful Capt. Sara Brannon, the Army's investigating officer. Together, they uncover a crime far greater than an AWOL soldier: a conspiracy of death that snakes from the secretive world of military operations, to the cutthroat alleys of a Mexican border town, leading them to a final, shocking revelation that may cost them both their lives.
Tularosa is the first book in McGarrity's "Kevin Kerney" crime series.
When Kevin Kerney, deputy chief of the New Mexico State Police, inherits an unexpected windfall of 6,400 acres of high-county land, the last thing he wants to think about is work. But while visiting his new property, he comes across an ailing stray dog that leads him to the butchered bones of a murder victim near the rugged mountain of Hermit's Peak.
After assigning the case to his subordinates, Kerney returns to Santa Fe to spend time with a woman he cares about, Sara Brannon, a career army officer who is visiting him on holiday. But his time with Sara must wait, as he is called back to Hermit's Peak when another body is found at a remote cabin. Now, Kerney must unearth the shattering truth about his new land and follow a twisting trail of blood through the majestic landscape of the American Southwest.
Meanwhile, back in Santa Fe, priceless art is stolen from the governor's offices and a beautiful young blonde is murdered in a millionaire's mansion. Kerney follows a trail of clues to Mexico, where he faces off against an old nemesis with powerful government connections. Unwilling to back down, Kerney must use all of his tenacity, raw courage, and knowledge of the criminal mind in a bloody showdown that may cost him his life.
"Michael McGarrity is the real deal." —Boston Globe
With his dazzling debut, Tularosa, Michael McGarrity was hailed "a born storyteller" (Denver Post)—and introduced readers to a memorable new hero, ex-Santa Fe chief of detectives Kevin Kerney. Now, featuring his vivid feel for the southwest, McGarrity's second gripping novel hurls Kerney onto the toughest case of his life.
Taking a job as a seasonal forest ranger in New Mexico's Gila Wilderness, Kevin Kerney is looking forward to a quiet summer high in the mountains. But the murder of a Mexican tourist, and the discovery of a disoriented old man in the wild, thrust Kerney into an investigation that will carry him back in time to a sixty-year-old feud between two land-rich brothers, Edgar and Eugene Cox.
Enlisting young state game and fish officer Jim Stiles to help solve the crimes, Kerney slowly uncovers evidence connecting the ruthless Cox feud with another suspicious death—and the radical actions of New Mexico's present-day county militia. But new assistant district attorney Karen Cox—Edgar's alluring daughter—is torn between hiding her father's long-buried secret and helping Kerney find the truth. Now someone wants Kerney dead—and the deeper he investigates, the more he may be digging his own grave...
“Complex, entirely original, and whip-smart.” —John Lescroart
A long-unsolved missing person’s case becomes a homicide investigation when the bones of the girlfriend of now retired Santa Fe Police Chief Kevin Kerney are unearthed forty-five years after her disappearance. And he is now the main suspect.
Due to retire at the end of the month, Kerney calls upon Clayton to find the slain officer?s son, discover what triggered the killings, and give him the ammunition he needs to bring a murderer to justice.