MERCY GUNDERSON is a former U.S. Army sniper who lost an eye in Iraq, and has returned to lick her wounds and run the family ranch in South Dakota, in the series debut, No Mercy (2010).
But things don't work out so smoothly. A dead body shows up on the ranch, and hunky local Sheriff Dawson doesn't seem to care much about investigating it. So Mercy, still reeling from PTSD, decides to look into things.
It's a great story (Hell, the whole series is great) but I'm still not quite sure why Armstrong won a Shamus for Best Novel for it. She isn't a private eye in it, and as the series has continued, she's been an amateur -- if deadly -- sleuth, a bartender, and in Merciless, a traineee FBI agent.
But never a private eye.
Those looking for a more legit P.I. - -albeit a milder-mannered one -- from Armstrong should check out her Julie Collins' series.
Report submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.
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