Bone Game: A Novel (American Indian Literature and Critical Studies Series)

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9780806126647: Bone Game: A Novel (American Indian Literature and Critical Studies Series)
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Bone Game is a murder mystery on a grand scale. Cole McCurtain, a mixed-blood Indian professor of Indian Studies at Santa Cruz, California, is haunted by dreams dating back to events of Spanish California. Images of a Spanish priest murdered in 1812, a rearing grizzly bear, and a black-and-white painted Indian who offers bones in his extended hands come at a time when dismembered pieces of a young woman are washing ashore in 1993. The dreams become increasingly urgent as the murders become more frequent, and Cole’s family and friends gather to help-including Choctaw relatives who travel west from Mississippi because "this story’s so big, Cole sees only a little bit of it."

 

 

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About the Author:

Louis Owens, who is of Choctaw-Cherokee-Irish descent, is Professor of English at the University of New Mexico. He is the author of several books, including Other Destinies: Understanding the American Indian Novel and the novels The Sharpest Sight and Bone Game, all published by the University of Oklahoma Press.

From Kirkus Reviews:

Owens returns to his Native American roots for this sprightly thriller, a sequel that lives up to its predecessor (Sharpest Sight, 1991). Cole McCurtain, a Choctaw Indian from Mississippi, is an English professor at the University of California at Santa Cruz. His life has been better: He's divorced and misses his daughter; he's bored with his job; a malevolent Native gambler from California's mission days is haunting his dreams (and sometimes his waking life as well); he's drinking heavily and not eating. Cole hardly takes notice when a psychopath begins killing and dismembering young women around campus. He only wants to retreat to New Mexico and fly-fish. The dreams, however, become increasingly sinister and ever more urgent as more people are slain. Back in Mississippi, an aged medicine woman begins to have the same visions. She, Cole's father, and his ancient great-uncle set out for California because they know that Cole is in danger and needs their help. Other murders are committed--murders that do not fit the serial killer's MO. Are there two madmen on the loose? Or is all of this the work of an ancient force of evil released to avenge the cruelty of the Spanish priests against the Indians centuries ago? Whether he likes it or not, it is Cole's destiny to find out. Aiding him in the search are his Mississippi relations, his daughter Abby (who has arrived to start school at the university), and the only other Indian faculty member--Alex, a transvestite Navajo. Owens writes about what he knows and does so with a sure hand--from the simultaneous fascination and repulsion of the dominant culture with Indians to the little stupidities of academia. A neat blend of elements of fantasy, mystery, and Native tradition. One suspects that yet another sequel is in the offing. -- Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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