I live in Maryland, and I have a Nebraska question. I hope you will be able to help me.
Sorry for the delay in answering this question - there was some confusion as to which one of us was doing this and most of us thought it was already done!
For contemporary fiction I would recommend Timothy Schaffert who consistently gets good reviews in the Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, and People. His most recent work is Coffins of Little Hope, about a small town obituary writer (but MUCH more than just that). Probably his best-reviewed book is titled The Singing and Dancing Daughters of God. Both titles have great descriptions of small town Nebraska life, and all of his books have a great sense of place.
For Mystery it's a little harder. Nebraska's most popular mystery author, Alex Kava, usually doesn't set her novels about FBI investigator Maggie O' Dell in Nebraska itself. Her latest, called Fireproof, actually is set in the Nebraska Sandhills, but it isn't her best-reviewed work.
Another Nebraska mystery writer is William J. Reynolds, who actually had a Nebraska Mystery series. But his titles might be a little hard to find, as they were written 10 - 15 years ago.
I hope this gives you what you were looking for. If you need more information, please let us know!