By Daneet Steffens
Updated February 14, 2001 at 05:00 AM EST
Nevada Barr: Judy Lawne

In Blood Lure, district ranger Anna Pigeon, previously seen patrolling the Natchez Trace Parkway in last year’s ”Deep South,” takes a break from her Mississippi post to work on a grizzly bear DNA project on the Montana side of Waterton- Glacier International Peace Park. Her research companions seem friendly enough — Joan, a stocky biologist who evokes the spirit of Pepe Le Pew, and Rory, a young man whom Anna wryly dubs ”bear bait.”

But when their scientific expedition is complicated by a bear attack — not to mention the discovery of a dead body — it quickly becomes clear that all is not well in grizzly country. Luckily, Anna is as adept at detective work as data collecting, and Barr’s red herrings and sly twists culminate in one huge payoff.