Pitt Law Alumnus David Riley Bertsch Publishes Debut Mystery Novel 'Death Canyon'
A common adage given to new writers is to write what you know. In his debut thriller, Death Canyon, David Riley Bertsch, Pitt Law class of 2009, has done just that. He’s authored an eco-thriller starring a former Pennsylvania lawyer named Jake Trent who’s relocated to Jackson, WY to work as a fly-fishing guide, much like the author himself.
The novel, published in August by Simon & Schuster imprint, Scribner, has received positive reviews from Suspense Magazine and New York Times best-selling thriller authors such as Craig Johnson, Michael McGarrity and C.J. Box.
According to the author’s website, after receiving his J.D. at Pitt Law, Bertsch worked as a summer associate at a defense litigation firm in Philadelphia and then as an intern at a women’s legal aid clinic before he made his move to Jackson to devote his time to writing. The novel concerns itself not just with a national park-based murder mystery, but ominous Yellowstone seismic events that may be related to the natural gas extraction process known as fracking. The curious should read the book to find out the connection.