The Rocky Bluff P.D. crime series is located in the town of Rocky Bluff, a small beach community between Ventura and Santa Barbara, but still situated in Ventura County. Anyone who really knows the real area will guess that the town might be like Carpenteria—and yes, it might, but it’s not.
The town of Rocky Bluff has not yet been discovered by many tourists. The houses by the beach are mostly run-down rentals that at one time were get-away cottages for people living in the larger southern cities of California. The northern portion of the town is a rocky bluff that gave the town it’s name—and is populated by large homes and the Rocky Bluff Community church.
To the south is a condemned pier, crumbling factories and a campground. Most of the homes are built on the hillside that leads to the 101 freeway.
Rocky Bluff P.D. is small, with a police chief, two detectives, one lieutenant, two sergeants, a public relations officer and several patrol officers. Among them is Officer Stacey Wilbur, a young widow with a son, who vowed when she came on the department to never date a fellow officer—a vow she broke when she met Detective Doug Milligan. Though there is a mutual attraction, they have difficulties finding time to be alone together—complicated by the fact that Doug rents a room of his house to a fellow officer, Gordon Butler, who once had a crush on Stacey. Gordon is sometimes too dedicated to following the rules.
In each of the novels, different officers are featured depending upon what is happening in Rocky Bluff though most have recurring roles.
No Sanctuary focuses on Detective Doug Milligan and Officer Stacey as they work together to solve the murder of a popular minister’s wife. Stacey is also called upon to help in the investigation of a suspected pedophile. She is called upon to make several decisions about her job and her private life—and one that nearly costs her life.
The Rocky Bluff P.D. series came about because of the interest in law enforcement created by the author’s police officer son-in-law who took her on a ride-along and came for coffee everyday after his shift and entertained her with tales about his job. She also has many friends in law enforcement, including members of the Public Safety Writers Association.