Smell of Death is a good old-fashioned police procedural from Marilyn Meredith, writing as F.M. Meredith.
Marilyn is a lovely person and popular mystery writer. She writes two series, the Rocky Bluffs series and the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. I’ve read some of both, though certainly not all as Marilyn is a prolific writer.
Smell of Death opens with Officer Stacy Wilbur arriving at a crime scene and finding a murder victim.
Rocky Bluffs is a California coastal town with a dark side. Two murders occur in the same town, seemingly unconnected except for the fact that the victims are related. The killing methods are different. They both seem random and without a motive.
Officer Wilbur is a beat cop, but the detective working the cases keeps her in the loop, partly as a professional courtesy, partly to see if she has the chops to promote to detective and partly to spend more time with the pretty young widow.
Smell of Death moves quickly, just like police work. There are several story threads woven through the book, both procedural and personal for the officers of Rocky Bluff P.D.
If you want a good old-fashioned police procedural, Smell of Death is worth a look!