P. A. “Perk” Parker, recently widowed and retired from the law faculty of a small college in northern California, returns to the Dust Bowl country of his youth to try to find out what happened to his father. Lyle Parker disappeared mysteriously fifty years before in search of legendary Spanish treasure. Perk had heard rumors that a dead body had been discovered in an old mine and that his dad was wanted for questioning in a murder investigation. But now Perk wants real answers.
Assisting him in his search are a pair of county librarians, local peace officers, a childhood friend, and a colorful cast of old timers with their memories. Complications develop when Perk discovers rekindled romance with his childhood sweetheart, confronts the ominous threats of a classmate who bullied him in the schoolyard, tries to follow a disappearing trail of evidence from the past, and barely survives the machinations of a stranger who does not want him to discover the truth.
Set in southeastern Colorado, southwestern Kansas, and northern New Mexico, Grit beneath My Nails narrates the story of one man’s discovery--of the past, of nearly forgotten love, and of himself.