Book #9 in our A to Z Mystery Tour
A Wild Mystery #1 – 2007
This mystery, set in the pueblos of New Mexico and filled with magical realism and Native American mysticism, is a departure from the cozy mysteries reviewed so far in the A to Z Mystery Tour – and that departure makes for a satisfying read. Take the deep dive, and travel with Jamaica Wild, agent for the Bureau of Land Management, as her journey weaves in and out of the lives of the Tiwa Puebloans who populate the fictional Tanoah Pueblo.
When Jerome Santana dies by apparent suicide in Jamaica’s presence during the Quiet Time when outsiders are not allowed in the Pueblo, Jamaica falls under suspicion and must rely on the teaching and protection of Momma Anna Santana, her medicine teacher, and Esperanza (also known as Telacote), a curandera. And always, the wolf cub Mountain is Jamaica’s companion.
Sandi Ault’s prose is lyrical; you won’t want to skim her depictions of the wild country of the Pueblos. There are two important pieces of information at the beginning of the book: a disclaimer stating that the author purposely combined disparate facts of her Native American research to ensure that this book’s mythology remain fictional, and a dedication to the real-life wolf cub Mountain.
Although the reader may wonder why Jamaica feels entitled to insert herself into Pueblo life over the objections of some, this is the first series in the A to Z Mystery Tour to stand out as an example of a deeper mystery. Five stars.