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BOHANNON’S COUNTRY by Joseph Hansen (Penguin:...

BOHANNON’S COUNTRY by Joseph Hansen (Penguin: $5.95; 174 pp.). Set in the small coastal towns of central California, these neatly crafted mystery stories involve not Hansen’s popular detective Dave Brandstetter, but ex-sheriff Hack Bohannon and his friends, a group of interesting, but never self-consciously “colorful” supporting characters. Hansen effectively depicts the kind of nasty little secrets that fester beneath the calm facades of small towns, especially in “Molly’s Aim,” in which a mildly retarded woman waits to take revenge on the high school hero who used her and discarded her.


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