"Suspicion of murder," is set in the snowy wastes of upstate New York's Adirondacks. Lt. Thomas Shard, head of Mohawk County Sheriff Department's criminal section, is an ex-state trooper who has returned to his hometown of Leyden, a classic small upstate town full of oddball characters who add color and sometimes humor to his investigations.
This volume begins when Shard discovers a woman's body in his carriage house sitting in the passenger seat of his beloved Morgan. Worse, he recognizes her as an old flame. After Doc Fox declares that she is "terminally dead," Shard's investigation spirals down with a list of suspects that includes him. The sheriff takes Shard off the case because of his personal interest and puts Sgt. Knut Johnsen in charge. Shard has to prove his innocence, however, and disobeys his boss and works the case himself. As his list of suspects widens, he irritates his mob enemies, experts in the art of human extinguishment, who try to assassinate Shard - twice, after they have already screwed up the on their contracts to kill women to dispose of in beds.
Shard and Johnsen end up with strange collection of suspects, men connected with drug companies and their kickbacks, an Ayn Rand devotee who is totally off the wall, and sadly Shard's former live-in lover whose life is endangered. Jarl Hacon comes to Shard's rescue some 1,000 years after his own a women problems, and leads the lieutenant through a labyrinth of babble about chimera, reality, fouled nests, and nest holders, to an understanding of who did what to whom and why. Hacon and O'Reilly, Shard's favorite bartender, become the heroes of the case.