KATHLEEN O'Neal Gear & Michael Gear
Forge, Dec 2001, 26.95, 352 pp.
In the thirteenth century, the once majestic Anasazi Empire is in a rapid state of decline. A nasty drought has led to a food shortage, which exacerbates the religious disputes and inter-clan genocide becomes the norm. War chief Browser and his trusted aide Catkin want to kill the witch Two Hearts, who burned their home to the ground. Two Hearts covets an amulet Browser wears because the witch believes that will extend his life.
At the same location, but in the twenty-first century, the FBI asks archeologists Dusty Steward and Maureen Cole to help on a homicide investigation. Someone killed a mutual friend Dr. Dale Emerson in Chaco Canyon, New Mexico with the evidence pointing towards a witch. Dusty and Maureen have the knowledge to see what the Feds might miss because the proof lies outside their belief system.
The alternating chapters between the thirteenth and twenty-first centuries keeps the readers on full alert as they try to connect the link between the eras. There are many fascinating mysteries contained within BONE WALKER, but it is the vibrant and perceptive panorama on the Anasazi culture that makes this novel stand out amidst the crowd of archeological who-done-its. The audience feels the decline of this mighty civilization and wonders if history will repeat itself with the United States.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner