Rendon's first novel in the Cash murder mystery series. Murder on the Red River (2017 Cinco Puntos Press) introduces us to "Cash" Renee Blackbear. It's the 1970s, in a rural and small town part of the world where the Red River divides Minnesota and North Dakota.
It’s a tough place to live but Cash is tough as nails herself - has been, ever since a mysterious lawman Sheriff Wheaton pulled her from her mother’s wrecked car when she was three. He kept an eye out for her as she navigated through foster homes, started working farms at age 13, and led a hardcore lifestyle of drinking, smoking, and playing pool in her off hours - all for cash.
Wheaton wants her to take hold of her life, get into junior college. Then a dead Indian is found lying in a field, and Cash dreams about the dead man’s HUD house on the Red Lake Reservation, mother and kids waiting. She has that kind of knowing. That’s the place to start looking. There’s a long and dangerous way to go to find the men who killed him.
Murder on the Red River won the Pinckley Women’s Debut Crime Novel Award, 2018. It was a Western Writers of America Spur Award Finalist 2018 in the Contemporary Novel category.
"Feisty, sensitive, and smart." - Publishers Weekly
Rendon delves deep into the history of Native American communities and the danger of forcing assimilation on a community outside the mainstream of American cultural norms."- Twin Cities Pioneer Press