Iron Ties

Written by Ann Parker
Review by Janette King

In Leadville, Colorado, in 1880, the town is waiting for the railroad to be constructed, but not everyone is happy about the way things will change. When Inez Stannert’s friend, Susan, fails to arrive from Twin Lakes at their appointed meeting time, Inez finds herself drawn into a mystery when she finds her friend. Was Susan injured in a simple rock slide, or was the railroad deliberately sabotaged?

But even as Inez tries to solve the mystery, she must deal with the changing realities of her own life. Inez is involved with the Reverend Sands, yet she’s attracted to the payroll guard to the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad, Preston Holt, and she wonders what’s become of her errant husband, Mark. Not to mention, she’s at odds with her business partner with the Silver Queen Saloon.

This novel is paced well and contains a wonderful array of characters. Inez is a fabulous character choice for an amateur detective: she is independent and can beat a man at a man’s game. Parker pays great attention to historical detail, and Iron Ties is an excellent mystery. I have to read the first of the series now.