Before old Ute shaman Daisy Perika gets to laugh, here's what has to happen: Neighboring shepherd Nahum Yaciiti will disappear, and one of his sheep will be slaughtered and mutilated. Rolling Thunder, a half-ton buffalo, will vanish from a fenced field. Gorman Sweetwater's prize Hereford bull, Big Ouray, will get butchered, his ears and genitals severed. Sleazebag insurance agent Arlo Nightbird will deny Sweetwater coverage on Big Ouray, only to turn up dead himself with identical mutilations. Head Ute policeman Charlie Moon will join his Anglo counterpart, acting Granite Creek (Colo.) police chief Scott Parris, to figure out who's killing these animals and their owners. They'll consult crazy serial-mutilator profiler Oswald Oakes and take turns baiting coldfish FBI agent James Hoover. They'll place side bets on fistfights and poetry recitations. They'll get a convenient confession to Nightbird's murder from a suspect who dies too quickly for any cross-examination. And Nahum Yaciiti and Arlo Nightbird, refusing to stay dead, will appear in visions to guide Anglos and Utes alike to the real killer. Not as dazzling as Doss's debut (The Shaman Sings, 1994), but still a remarkably well-crafted portrait of a fascinating corner of America.