In this sequel to the “gritty, brash, and totally gripping” (The Real Book Spy) thriller Bad Axe County, Sheriff Heidi Kick is investigating an illicit cage fighting ring with ties to white nationalism when her husband suddenly goes missing.
It’s a time for celebration in Bad Axe County as the town gathers for the annual Syttende Mai—or Norwegian Independence Day—festival. During this rollicking family-oriented event filled with dancing and food, Sheriff Heidi Kick discovers a dark and shocking event—a migrant worker has been savagely beaten but refuses to explain what happened. Then, a sudden disappearance of a band member shatters the festival. Something is deeply wrong in Bad Axe County.
As she looks for answers, Heidi plunges into a secret underworld where high-stakes cage fights double as combat training for the White Nationalist movement. Then all hell breaks loose for Heidi when her husband disappears and his deepest secret is revealed—he fathered a mixed-race child before their marriage. Can she solve these alarming mysteries, reclaim her husband, and save the life of a stepson she never knew existed?
A timely portrait of the deep divisions and simmering tensions brewing in our country today, Dead Man Dancing takes you into the dark heart of a movement defined by violence and hate. Featuring John Galligan’s signature “striking prose, engaging characters” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), and unforgettable twists and turns, Dead Man Dancing is a breathless thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
"Intense...Galligan smoothly balances multiple story lines...readers will hope this is the start of a series."
– Publishers Weekly
"Striking prose, engaging characters, and a searing story of crimes rooted in the heartland...a darkly irresistible thriller."
– Kirkus (starred review)
"Gritty, brash, and totally gripping. John Galligan is a hell of a writer."
– The Real Book Spy
"If Joseph Conrad had really wanted to find the heart of darkness, he’d have looked in Bad Axe County. Lurking in the isolated coulees at the edge of the Mississippi River are some of the meanest, foulest, cruelest hearts imaginable, and John Galligan evokes them with all the intensity of a mad poet. But in county sheriff Heidi Kick, a woman chipped and broken on every edge, Galligan offers a righteous force in opposition...A dark beauty of a novel."
– William Kent Krueger, New York Times Bestselling author of Desolation Mountain
"Fast-paced and utterly addictive. I loved Heidi kick, the Dairy-Queen-turned-sheriff. Long may she reign."
– Lori Rader-Day, Edgar-Award-nominated author of Under a Dark Sky
"An exceptional novel...Kick is a remarkable character and this is a bad-axe book."