The Shaman's Game (Shaman Mysteries)

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9780380974252: The Shaman's Game (Shaman Mysteries)

On a parched plain, encircled by a dry embrace of willow bones, the ritual begins. Here, there is searing heat, bleeding feet, unimaginable thirst This is the Sun Dance.

Author James D. Doss blends spinetingling mystery with Native American mysticism as no one else can. Through his expert and justifiably acclaimed storytelling abilities, two very different worlds come together: the modern world, where human greed, anger, and jealousies can drive mortal men and women to commit terrible crimes; and the spirit world of dreams and omens, and a Power older than civilization. The former is the realm of tribal policeman Charlie Moon and his sometime associate Granite Creek, Colorado, Police Chief Scott Parris. The latter is the province of Charlie's aunt Daisy Perika, Ute elder and shaman.

For the Ute of Southern Colorado, the annual Sun Dance is among the most solemn and sacred of rituals. But too often recently Death has been an uninvited guest at the hallowed ceremony. None of the deceased has sustained visible, life-ending injuries, so Charlie Moon is reluctant to call it murder. Yet he knows there was nothing "natural" about the unexplained deaths of young and strong dancers, like the blue-armed Shoshone, Joseph Sparrow.

Daisy Perika is also aware of the events unfolding around her, but unlike her skeptical policeman nephew, she trusts the rumors of sorcery that travel like smoke on the wind. For there is much the eyes cannot see and the hands cannot touch; and the spirits have sent her words and signs warning there is great evil in her midst. . .and that there are many more corpses to follow.

The return of a childhood friend--a beautiful Ute woman back from college to write a newspaper story revealing who, or what, is stealing men's lives--has raised the stakes in Charlie Moon's investigation. With those he cares for deeply suddenly in harm's way, perhaps he should heed his friend Parris's suggestion that he look beyond the rational for a

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About the Author:

James D. Doss, recently retired from the technical staff of Los Alamos National Laboratory, now spends most of his time in a small cabin above Taos -- writing mystery fiction. He also travels to the fascinating locations where his stories take place, often camping in remote areas to absorb the impression of an Anasazi ruin, a deep canyon, an arid mesa, or a Sun Dance. His Shaman series includes The Shaman Sings, The Shaman Laughs, The Shaman's Bones, The Shaman's Game, The Night Visitor, and Grandmother Spider. The unusual plots are a mix of high technology and mysticism (Shaman Sings), bizarre animal mutilations (Shaman Laughs), theft of a sacred artifact (Shaman's Bones), an unprecedented form of murder and revenge at the Sun Dance (Shaman's Game), a most peculiar haunting followed by the discovery of an astonishing fossil (Night Visitor), and -- because a small girl has killed a spider without performing the prescribed ritual -- the appearance of a monstrous, murderous, eight-legged creature on the reservation (Grandmother Spider, of course!).

From Publishers Weekly:

For the Ute Indians of southwestern Colorado, the Sun Dance is a quest for healing and connection with the higher power. It is also a physically punishing ritual. When three people die during two dances, tribal police officer Charlie Moon (in the fourth captivating book of this exceptional series, after The Shaman's Bones, 1997) can't quite accept the verdicts of natural causes. Moon's aunt, elderly shaman Daisy Perika, dreams that the victims were targets of a witch. A lovely but frail young Ute woman, Delly Sands, recently returned to the reservation and working for the tribal newspaper, thinks that her reporting will unmask the witch. When Delly herself is wounded in an attack with a weapon that has powerful tribal symbolism, Moon must take Aunt Daisy's warning more seriously. The old shaman determines to expose the witch on her own, a "game" that could cause more deaths. As in the previous Shaman stories, Doss skillfully navigates the tricky terrain between fact and fable, as Moon balances clear-eyed cop logic with timeless tribal beliefs that can make their own reality. The Sun Dance scenes are spellbinding, rendered with powerful conviction and knowledgeable respect.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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