Books·Canadian

Blackwater Falls by Ausma Zehanat Khan

The first in a crime fiction series featuring detective Inaya Rahman.

The first in a crime fiction series featuring detective Inaya Rahman

Girls from immigrant communities have been disappearing for months in the Colorado town of Blackwater Falls, but the local sheriff is slow to act and the fates of the missing girls largely ignored. At last, the calls for justice become too loud to ignore when the body of a star student and refugee — the Syrian teenager Razan Elkader — is positioned deliberately in a mosque.

Detective Inaya Rahman and Lieutenant Waqas Seif of the Denver Police are recruited to solve Razan's murder, and quickly uncover a link to other missing and murdered girls. But as Inaya gets closer to the truth, Seif finds ways to obstruct the investigation. Inaya may be drawn to him, but she is wary of his motives: he may be covering up the crimes of their boss, whose connections in Blackwater run deep.

Inaya turns to her female colleagues, attorney Areesha Adams and Detective Catalina Hernandez, for help in finding the truth. The three have bonded through their experiences as members of vulnerable groups and now they must work together to expose the conspiracy behind the murders before another girl disappears.

Delving deep into racial tensions, and police corruption and violence, Blackwater Falls examines a series of crimes within the context of contemporary American politics with compassion and searing insight. (From Minotaur Books)

Ausma Zehanat Khan grew up in Toronto and now lives in Denver. She's a former adjunct law professor and former editor-in-chief of Muslim Girl magazine. She's the author of several crime fiction and fantasy novels. Her debut novel, The Unquiet Dead, won the Arthur Ellis award for best first novel. Her subsequent mystery novels include The Language of SecretsAmong the Ruins and A Dangerous Crossing.

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