Hardcover edition 2003, St. Martin’s Minotaur, New York
Forensic geologist Em Hansen has barely survived a series of life-altering events that have forced her to get to know herself all over again. Her longtime boyfriend is now a few months in her past, the future she had laid out for herself has evaporated into thin air, and her new man, Jack Sampler, has run away.
Well, not run away exactly, but has set off on a secret operation, possibly related to his job as an FBI agent, without telling Em where he is going or when he’ll be back.
It soon becomes clear that he’s in Florida, perhaps as part of an investigation the FBI has been running on a cloud of dust moving into the atmosphere, ostensibly borne on winds from Africa, and the implications it has for global politics.
But Em suspects something more sinister may be at work. Will Jack ever forgive her for following him to the southeast and butting in on his case? That is if they get out of this situation with their relationship, not to mention their bodies, intact.
With its suspenseful story that begins in a cloud of dust and leads all the way to NASA, Killer Dust is another top-notch mystery full of the impeccably researched popular science and the complex, engaging characters Sarah Andrews’s many fans have come to expect from her award-winning series.
"For Em Hansen’s eighth outing, Andrews takes on national security in a complicated plot about airborne anthrax and the possible devastation it could wreak on the planet. Em’s knowledge of Earth’s minutiae propels her from her Wyoming home to the humid wetlands of Florida, where her new lover, FBI agent Jack Sampler (introduced in 2002’s Fault Line), has disappeared.
As always, Andrews surrounds Em with a cast of unusual supporting characters; yet Hansen is still her gem-unpolished, naive and, worst of all for a Florida trip, hydrophobic.
Ably combining science and suspense, Andrews once again entertains and educates, making the driest dust theory intriguing and portraying Florida’s landscape in a new geophysical light".
(Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
The New York Times Book Review
" [Em Hansen is] a clear-thinking, straight-talking heroine whose unabashed naïveté is endearing".
"Sarah Andrews keeps getting better with every book she writes".