Third generation Kanab residents Rolly and Abigail Rogers come from a long line of dedicated pot hunters who scour the desert southwest in search of valuable antiquities. When the Utah couple fails to return from a weekend skeleton picnic, (pot hunting trip) along the desolate Arizona Strip, local Sheriff Charley Sutter turns to BLM Law Enforcement Ranger J.D. Books for help.
When Books searches the missing couple’s home for clues about their disappearance, he discovers the house has been burglarized and a valuable collection of ancient Anasazi and Fremont Indian antiquities stolen. Soon a search and rescue operation finds the Rogers’ truck and trailer at an abandoned campsite near an ancient Anasazi ruin that has been recently excavated. Footprints and other evidence lead Books to conclude that the couple may have been overpowered by a small group of unknown assailants.
Sheriff Sutter assigns an attractive young deputy, Beth Tanner, to investigate the burglary of the Rogers’ home under the watchful eye of Books. Together they track some of the stolen property to a pawn shop in St. George, and ultimately to a young Navajo man with a criminal record. Keeping this man alive long enough to make him talk, however, proves difficult.
Books and Tanner soon learn of a shadowy group of armed Indian police who patrol vast swaths of tribal and federal lands in search of anyone desecrating ancient Native American burial sites. They also discover several recent unsolved cases in the Four Corners region where individuals disappeared into the desert wilderness under suspicious circumstances, never to be heard from again. Could the disappearance of the Rogers, and others, be the responsibility of this group?
As Books and Tanner close in on those responsible, Books’ own survival skills will be tested when he is unwittingly drawn into a remote part of the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument. There he is forced into a deadly game of cat-and-mouse, where the hunter becomes the hunted, and only one person gets to go home alive.
|Publisher:||Poisoned Pen Press|
|Series:||J. D. Books Series , #2|
|Product dimensions:||5.60(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)|
About the Author
MICHAEL NORMAN is a writer and retired journalism professor who lives in an absolutely unhaunted house near the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St.Paul. Beth Scott, who died in early 1994, was full-time freelance writer for more than thirty-five years.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I started to read this and couldn't make it past the first few pages. Norman's writing style is unreadable. I thumbed through the book to see if it got any better and it didn't. Wasted money on this book.
Reviewed by Jean Brickell for Readers Favorite The term 'skeleton picnic' refers to pot hunters in the Southwest United States that hunt for Native American relics either legally or illegally. When a couple of pot hunters go missing, Ranger J.D. Books, of the Bureau of Land Management Law Enforcement sets out to solve the mystery. There begins a tale of intrigue. Kidnapping and murder as well as more mystery shows robbery and selling of stolen property and opens up hidden previous crimes. This story highlights the rough but beautiful country of the Southwest near the 4 Corners area, where Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and Colorado meet, that has been home to groups of Native Americans for centuries. The romance between J.D. and Becky Eddins hits a rough spot when she becomes the counsel for one of the suspects that has information that J.D. needs. This is a story that keeps a fast pace and there are surprises throughout the book. Native American artifacts, illegal pot hunters, murders, kidnapping, and the selling of stolen goods all help build suspense in this face pace book. J.D. Books investigates a tangle of crimes with each crime leading to more dangerous problems. This book also has fast vehicle chases on bad roads with gun fire while J.D. desperately tries to save the life of yet another kidnapped victim. He is torn between his job that requires his undivided attention and his family problems during his attempt to bring the criminals to justice.