The illegal drug trade in BC's Lower Mainland is a ruthless business. Danger is extreme, stakes are high, human lives are expendable. In this white-knuckled crime thriller set in the thick of drug dealing and organized crime, the action gets underway with a murder, followed by more murders and suicide. In the course of the story, a sophisticated young widow becomes a huntress, an addict-killer becomes a hero, and an untouchable cop is touched. And a biker, whose profession is killing, is caught in the crosshairs.Sergeant Jackson Cole is a veteran RCMP undercover operator who, while on suspension for a shooting, is teaching a course of undercover techniques to other officers - a move that unwittingly places him in the middle of a drug operation and multiple-homicide.Lauren Gray, an artist and gallery owner, is recovering from the untimely death of her husband - written off by police as a drunk-driving accident. Lauren is extremely suspicious about her husband's death and is looking for answers. And revenge.Danny Fox, just released from prison, is a heroin addict looking for one last big score. In his pursuit, he encounters both Grey and Cole. He offers Cole narcotics. To Grey, he offers information about her husband's death, and, unexpectedly, friendship.This extraordinary first novel brings fiction into the realm of reality. Figures of the Vancouver drug trade and crime scene emerge almost too real in Proximate Causes , blurring the line between fact and fantasy. Smith breathes life into sinister characters of terrifying proportions. Set entirely in the Lower Mainland, from the ritzy mansions of West Vancouver to the flop-houses of the Fraser Valley, this page-turner is guaranteed to keep you up late for at least a couple of nights.