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Sara Paretsky revisits 'Bleeding Kansas'

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Sara Paretsky
Sara Paretsky has written a dozen V.I. Warshawski thrillers, but her new novel examines religious intolerance in her home state of Kansas.
MPR photo/Euan Kerr

After writing a string of hard-boiled detective novels featuring private eye V.I. Warshawski, author Sara Paretsky is returning to her roots. 

Her new novel, "Bleeding Kansas," is set in a small town on the prairie. 

Paretsky says the book is about small town scandal and explores the ideas of religious tolerance, love and loss. 

Paretsky grew up in Kansas. Her parents moved there when her father became the first Jew to get a tenured position at the University of Kansas in Lawrence. She says they had to live out of town because Lawrence was segregated and her family wasn't welcome in most places.

Paretsky told Minnesota Public Radio's Euan Kerr the idea for her story came from personal experience -- including something that happened to her parents many years later.