It was only routine. A simple assignment for private investigator Sam Blackman and his partner Nakayla Robertson. Follow a history professor who’s suing a spinal surgeon for malpractice and catch her in physical activities that undercut her claim.
When the professor, Janice Wainwright, visits Connemara, Carl Sandburg’s home in Flat Rock, N.C., and climbs the arduous trail to the top of Glassy Mountain, Sam believes he has the evidence to wrap up the case – until he finds the woman semi-conscious and bleeding on the mountain’s granite outcropping. Her final words: “It’s the Sandburg verses. The Sandburg verses.”
As the first person to discover the dying woman, Sam becomes the first suspect. Now the routine case is personal. An autopsy reveals painkillers in her blood and solid proof of the surgeon’s errors. Sam is left with the haunting questions: why did this suffering woman endure the climb to the mountaintop, and did she stumble and fall or did someone cause her death?
A break-in at the Wainwright farmhouse and the theft of Sandburg volumes convince Sam someone is seeking information worth killing for. But what did Pulitzer-Prize-winner Sandburg have in his literary collection that leads to multiple murders? And who will be targeted next?
Sam and Nakayla must navigate a convoluted trail of historical facts and mountain legends to arrive at the truth, a truth Carl Sandburg never knew he possessed, and a treasure to be had for a song. This is the third installment in the Sam Blackman series.