My Sister’s Grave (Crosswhite #1) by Robert Dugoni

KK Conley Review

RD Sisters Grave

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This is my favorite Robert Dugoni book. This story shows the destruction of an entire family when one of the two daughters disappears and her body is found several years later. The father commits suicide and the mother withdraws into herself. Tracy Crosswhite, the victim’s older sister, is a sympathetic protagonist who joins the Seattle Police Department years later so she has better access to information and can track her sister’s killer.

Then her sister’s body is found when a lake is reduced to its original size. Tracy butts heads with heads with the long time sheriff when she shows up to watch the excavation. She’s not there on official business but on her own time, and the sheriff who’s known her most of her life isn’t happy about her presence.

Tracy is one tough cookie. She’s bright and an award winning target shooter. And she’s nice. She helps others, encourages others, and takes pride in her work. I liked this book because the protagonist is smart and capable, and faces the challenges of being one of the few women in a police department without whining about how much harder it is for women in her environment. She just works harder and smarter to prove herself.

Dugoni does a nice job of telling us about the victim. He makes her a generous character that I cared about and shows the love between the two sisters so I cheered for Tracy as she relentlessly overcomes obstacles to learn what happened to her sister.

An example of Dugoni’s writing:

Calloway pointed a finger at her like he’d done when she was a kid riding her bike on the sidewalk. “You’ll stay out of the way. If I tell you to leave, you will leave. Do we understand one another?”

Tracy was in no position to tell him she’d investigated more murders in a year than he’d investigated his entire career. “We do.”

Calloway gave her a lingering glare before returning his attention to his deputy.

If you like novels with great characters that you care about, then I recommend this book.

Booklist Online Review

Tracy’s younger sister has disappeared, and eventually everyone’s worst fears are confirmed. The girl was kidnapped and killed. A local psycho is caught, tried, and put in his cage, but the horror resonates. Tracy’s father takes his own life. Tracy quits her job as high-school science teacher and becomes a cop. This conventional opening could lead readers to think they’re watching an old pro going through the motions. They’d be wrong. As a cop, Tracy has access to detectives’ files and court transcripts and notices discrepancies. Soon she’s leading an effort to free her sister’s convicted killer, and we have the cops and lawyers who worked on the case muttering mysteriously that “everything is about to come out.” Tracy gets cryptic warnings about leaving the past alone. Somebody fires a shotgun through her lawyer’s window. Yes, a conspiracy is revealed, but it’s an unexpected one, as moving as it is startling, and it’s about now that the author ramps up the tension. The ending is violent, suspenseful, even touching. A nice surprise for thriller fans.— Don Crinklaw

© Booklist Online

Amazon Description

Tracy Crosswhite has spent twenty years questioning the facts surrounding her sister Sarah’s disappearance and the murder trial that followed. She doesn’t believe that Edmund House—a convicted rapist and the man condemned for Sarah’s murder—is the guilty party. Motivated by the opportunity to obtain real justice, Tracy became a homicide detective with the Seattle PD and dedicated her life to tracking down killers.

When Sarah’s remains are finally discovered near their hometown in the northern Cascade mountains of Washington State, Tracy is determined to get the answers she’s been seeking. As she searches for the real killer, she unearths dark, long-kept secrets that will forever change her relationship to her past—and open the door to deadly danger.

4.4 out of 5 stars, 8,500+ reviews


3.9 out of 5 stars, 24,000+ ratings

Robert Dugoni’s Description

(Same as Amazon Description)