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This is the second book of the series, but the fourth one written. At first I moved Richard and Jill directly into Hawthorn County from Michigan. (If you read BONNE FEMME, you understand the reason for the move.) After writing two more novels set in the Ozarks, I realized that the move to the hill country was not seamless. It needed backstory. Instead of burdening the reader with naration to explain how Richard became the rural deputy that he is in CANAAN CAMP and SECRET SONG, I wrote COLD TEARS as a bridge to take the Carters from Breton County, Michigan to Hawthorn County via James Mill in southwestern Missouri. The story tells of the emotional and marital problems Richard and Jill have to navigate and explains how he goes from being a pardoned felon to a rural deputy sheriff.

Although this book was published third instead of second as it should have been, it was unavoidable due to contractual problems which are best not discussed. Suffice it to say, things were resolved in time for me to publish it shortly after Canaan Camp.

This novel was great fun to write. It came about as I was trying to pull myself from the extremely dark serial killer novels I had produced in Bonne Femme and Canaan Camp. COLD TEARS is a pure mystery with Richard playing the part of an amateur sleuth and could be considered a cozy. At any rate, I hope you will enjoy reading it. I got quite attached to a strong young woman named Molly. I must confess that I am partial to powerful female characters—especially those who do not seem strong at first encounter.