Depend on Elizabeth Peters (Street of the Five Moons, etc.) to come up with another no-nonsense, real-person heroine – meet pleasingly plump anthropologist D. J. Abbott. Her father is an obsessed archaeologist, her mother’s hooked on Barbara Cartland, and D. J. herself is cursed with a doubly fast mouth: she’ll eat anything in sight, and she doesn’t know how or when to keep quiet. And there’s lots both to eat and to make sarcastic remarks about when D. J. takes a summer job as resident anthropologist at the Arizona ranch of billionaire Hank Hunnicutt. Hank supports and follows every crackpot theory – Atlantis, UFOs, reincarnation – so the ranch teems with fawning charlatans whom D. J. enjoys skewering. It also teems with eligible men (two court D. J., in opposite styles); with whisperings about Hank’s latest secret discovery in the desert (dragon bones? the missing link?); and with evildoers – who lace D. J.’s drinks with drugs and who finally kidnap Hank himself. The search for Hank, of course, involves séances, dowsing rods, and such – but common sense ultimately prevails. Unfortunately, however, the mystery isn’t worth the fuss, the villain is easy to spot, and the whole thing takes nearly 100 pages longer than it should. So it’s a mixed bag – a honey of a heroine, a turkey of a plot.