By Dorie McCullough Lawson
The summer time of 1995 marks Kate Colter's 15th yr within the small city of Hayden, Wyoming. a brand new Englander at center, Kate loves her husband and daughter and is keen on her buddies. but, privately, she feels disconnected from the folks round her. Then alongside comes Tom Baxter. Her mother-in-law's new suitor from "back East," Tom instantly attracts Kate in together with his light appeal and interesting dialog, like a bit piece of the house she so misses. yet inconsistencies in his tales are piquing Kate's curiosity—and a chain of unusual and suspicious occasions is prime her to a terrifying end which can perpetually shatter her lifestyles and the lives of these she loves.
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Tom peeled a five-dollar bill off a sizable wad of cash he pulled from his front pocket. I wondered about a thin white scar trailing across the back of his hand and up under his cuff. He handed the money to Clara and told her to go buy the biggest cone they would make her. I nodded my approval when Clara looked my way. ” The conversation moved easily from topic to topic. Tom said he wanted to see the Custer Battlefield and asked how far away it was. I felt a pang of guilt because the Battle of the Little Bighorn is really the only nationally significant historic site near Hayden and there I was, Miss American Studies, and I’d been there only once, and that was years ago.
Lorraine must have planted herself in the spot in front of the trophy shop very early. Her orange and green plas• 33 • D O R I E M C C U L L O U G H L AW S O N tic lawn chairs were essentially orchestra seats, front and center. She was so close to the street that her clean white sneakers rested on the curb and she had a perfect view of the Aberdeen-Main intersection, right where the parade takes a turn. Tucked beneath her were a small cooler and a big tan purse. The parade had already started by the time we found her, and Clara was nearly out of her mind with worry that she might have missed the Rodeo Princess.
Laughed George. I could tell Tom’s eyes were wide, even behind his sunglasses. George then happily explained a Hayden tradition like no other, Butt Darts. ” He took the time to explain to Tom, “It’s an old round brick building with rickety wooden bleachers around the walls and an open dirt space in the middle. It’s like a theater-in-the-round for livestock. “Competitors squeeze a quarter between their butt cheeks, then walk an obstacle course, without dropping the quarter. ” George stood up from the grass and pretended to put a quarter between his cheeks.