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I Shall Not Want by Julia Spencer-Fleming
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I Shall Not Want (2008)

by Julia Spencer-Fleming

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5792826,565 (4.25)77
People die. Marriages fail. In the small Adirondack town of Millers Kill, New York, however, life doesn't stop for heartbreak.

None.

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» See also 77 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 28 (next | show all)
This is the sixth book in the Clare Fergusson/Russ Van Alstyne series of mysteries. I have been reading them back-to-back and can't imagine how it would be to have to wait a year or five or eight for the next book to come out. They are extremely compelling stories both as mysteries and as an exploration of mature love.

Russ and Clare haven't spoken for a while. After his wife's death in a car accident, Russ is feeling too guilty that he chose to help Clare rather than go with his wife during the snowstorm. Clare is feeling both hurt and abandoned and is throwing herself into her church work. She has also, with the advice of her bishop, reupped in the military by joining the National Guard as a helicopter pilot.

When Clare attends an ecumenical gathering, she meets Sister Lucia who is very involved with the Hispanic workers who are filling jobs on many of the farms in the area. Clare didn't even know there were Hispanic workers around. She offers to help. Then she gets a phone call from Sister Lucia telling her she was in a car accident while transporting workers and goes to see how she can help. The accident also brings Russ to the scene. The workers have scattered leading him to believe that they were undocumented. He also learns that his sister and brother-in-law have hired the workers to help with their newly expanded dairy operation.

Then a body is found near the farm and it looks like he was killed execution-style. Two more bodies are found at the scene of a big church picnic and they were also murdered. A murder investigation isn't what new officer Hadley Knox was expecting. She came home with her kids to stay with her grandfather who is the sexton of Clare's church. She came home broke and needs the job but she isn't sure police work is really her calling.

This story includes undocumented workers and drug running from the nearby larger cities. It is a fast-paced, tension filled story. The tension between Russ and Clare is nonstop as they are both dealing with grief and guilt but also with love for each other. I couldn't put it down. ( )
  kmartin802 | Jul 12, 2019 |
The death of a dairy farm worker, followed by the discovery of two bodies buried in the woods, draws Reverend Clare Fergusson into the plight of the migrant farm workers while the police department investigates the deaths.

All of the expected characters make an appearance in this, the sixth outing for Clare, Russ, and friends. The complex, suspense-filled narrative, peopled with strong, believable characters, gives the narrative depth and the plot imparts relevant meaning to the telling of the tale. Single mom Hadley Knox is a welcome addition to the department as is Officer Kevin Flynn. And, as in the earlier books in the series, there’s Russ and Clare, trying to avoid each other; Clare and Russ, meant to be. Ah, the angst. Readers are likely to find it impossible to set this book aside before turning the final page [and discovering the latest twist].

Highly recommended. ( )
  jfe16 | Jun 25, 2019 |
Maybe the best installment of this excellent series.

I still maintain that Spencer-Fleming writes some of the best character-driven fiction out there. Her characters are well-developed, flawed, and so very human that I could be reading about people I know.

( )
  bookishkris | Nov 19, 2018 |
Loved and hated this book. Loved because of the turn the relationship between Clare and Russ took...finally! Hated because this book was an emotional rollercoaster and hated the ending. I know she comes back because there are several more books in the series but uggghh! The love story overshadowed the mystery in this one but overall a good story. I like the way the character of Hadley is being developed as well. Can't wait to listen to the next book! ( )
  bostonterrio | Nov 21, 2017 |
Chief of Police Russ Van Alstyne is still mourning the recent death of his wife in the previous book. The local Episcopalian reverend, Clare Fergusson, has re-upped her National Guard status as well as ministering to her flock at St. Alban's. It's been several years since I've picked up one of this series, and I'm glad I decided to go back to Miller's Kill again. These are mysteries with a great sense of character and place. The small town Miller's Kill, New York is not without its' share of big city problems. Touching on many still current topics, from drug running to migrant workers, Clare and Russ find themselves both on opposite and the same side of the law once again. The ending made me double check that there are still a couple more books to go in this fine series. ( )
  ethel55 | Mar 4, 2017 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Spencer-Fleming, Juliaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Czwikla, FraukeÜbersetzersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Toren, SuzanneReadersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
My Shepherd will supply my need,
Jehovah is his Name;
In pastures fresh he makes me feed
Beside the living stream.
He brings my wandering spirit back
When I forsake his ways,
And leads me, for his mercy's sake,
In paths of truth and grace.

When I walk through the shades of death,
Thy presence is my stay;
One word of thy supporting breath
Drives all my fears away.
Thy hand, in sight of all my foes,
Doth still my table spread;
My cup with blessings overflows,
Thy oil anoints my head.

The sure provision of my God
Attend me all my days;
Oh, may thy house be mine abode
And all my work be praise.
There would I find a settled rest,
While others go and come;
No more a stranger or a guest,
But like a child at home.

--Isaac Watts (1674-1748) paraphrase of Psalm 23,
The Hymnal, 1982, The Church Pension Fund
Dedication
To the librarians and libraries who have taught me, shaped me, befriended me, and recommended me, including: (there follows a long list of libraries)
First words
When she saw the glint of the revolver barrel through the broken glass in the window, Hadley Knox thought, I'm going to die for sixteen bucks an hour.
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