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Foothills Justice cover

  • Keywords
    • Conservation officer,
    • Alberta,
    • High River,
    • Serial killer,
    • Climate change,
    • Hunting,
    • Wild boar

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Foothills Justice
by Nelson Riis

When game warden Luke Dutton hears a gunshot while he’s out repairing fencing on his ranch in Alberta’s foothills, he has no idea that single shot is going to set into motion events that will turn his world upside down. The more he discovers, the less he knows about what’s going on in the Highwood River Valley, and the more he realizes things don’t add up. Between the revelation that there’s a serial killer living in their midst, the Dutton family’s discovery of the long-lost Lemon Gold Mine, and the damage that Black Eagle Gas will do to the Duttons’ ranch when they begin fracking, Luke has his hands full. Add water problems caused by climate change, drug-related problems on the local First Nations reserve, and dealing with numerous violations of hunting and fishing laws to the Duttons’ challenges in an everchanging world. As things come to a head and Luke works to keep the ranch solvent and his family safe, will the RCMP catch the killer before he kills again?

Nelson Riis grew up in southwest Alberta, has an MA in Geography, and is a Fellow with the Royal Canadian Geographic Society. While he was an MP for twenty years, Riis wrote a weekly newspaper column and hosted a weekly half-hour TV show. He’s had over 30 different jobs, having worked as a farm hand, timber cruiser, commercial fisherman, cedar and plywood mill worker, nightclub waiter, deck hand, and insurance broker, among other things. Riis was a charter faculty member at today's Thompson Rivers University, where he taught Human Geography and was Chair of the Social Sciences Dept. As a geographer and as a Member of Parliament, he traveled the world. His hobbies include canoeing, camping, landscape painting, hiking, gardening, soapstone carving, auditing courses at Carleton University, and especially reading. Riis currently lives on un-ceded Anishinabe Algonquin territory, in Ottawa, with his wife, Penny. They have two sons, Nils and Jon, and two granddaughters, Kathryn and Kristen. Currently, Riis has two cats and a backyard with eight squirrels, three chipmunks, a rabbit, and a family of raccoons. All sorts of birds too.


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