DEAD SOUL by James D. Doss


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Seven-foot Ute tribal policeman–turned-rancher Charlie Moon (White Shell Woman, 2002, etc.) is called on once more to make sense of his aunt Daisy Perika’s visions.

As it happens, Charlie’s too busy to pay much attention to the old woman’s eerie sightings of a beleaguered redhead. A two-toed cougar is hassling his Holsteins, and he’s been dragooned into looking into the unsolved murder of fellow Ute Billy Smoke, a victim of the episode that put neighboring rancher and esteemed Colorado Senator Patch Davidson into a wheelchair. Calling on his best friend Scott Parris, Granite Creek’s Anglo police chief, Charlie learns less than he does from the Senator’s gabby gateman, who confides that politicos as big as the President have secretly visited; that the Senator’s nephew hangs around aimlessly; and that ranch manager Henry Buford dogs the Senator’s every move. The more Charlie noses around, the more Secret Service and FBI types warn him off. And then the Davidson airfield is blown up along with Charlie’s ranch, and an attempt is made to decimate the Senate in DC There’ll be more casualties back on the ranch and a full-blown federal cover-up before Charlie, now seeing as many visions as Aunt Daisy, stakes out something deadlier than that two-toed cougar.

Wry humor, a few smooches for overdue Charlie, and Native American lyricism can’t quite salvage a plot that hinges on a mystery cliché that was stale back in the ’20s.

Pub Date: Sept. 15th, 2003
ISBN: 0-312-31744-1
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Minotaur
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2003


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