The Great North Dakota Wheat Fields -- Harvest 1919: Summer is dying, the wheat fields are ripe. Great steam-powered reapers and their operators are sweeping out across the region to gather in the bounty. But this is not an unalloyed celebration of life; a killer has followed these teams for years, undiscovered. Now young Charlie Krueger, working to bury a broken heart, witnesses another burial- something he was not meant to see. Instantly he is a threat to the murderer- who knows who he is, and who knows how to kill.
The setting and the period drew me to this new mystery. A period of steam mechanicals, and, as the subtitle says "Bindlestiffs and Blood". Publishers Weekly called it "...an evocative look at the hardships of farming, the intersection of progress with old-fashioned ways, and the loneliness of the Great Plains."
Richard A. Thompson also has mysteries featuring bail-bondsman (and ex-bookie) Herman Jackson, hiding in St. Paul after some excitement in Detroit.
All look rich in atmosphere- let me know if you try them!