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 Molly Bearpaw is the lone employee of the Oklahoma branch of the Native American Advocacy League but, in this initial outing, spends most of her time playing detective. Two residents of the Country Haven Nursing Home in Tahlequah have died of botulism poisoning, one of them the roommate of Mercer Vaughan, an old friend of Molly's grandmother. Recently returned to the area after the bitter windup of a love affair, Molly teams up with attractive (and attracted) Deputy Sheriff D.J. Kennedy to investigate the deaths. She manages to question, at tedious length, everyone in the Home's A-wing, along with their friends, relatives and lawyers, focusing on who might benefit. In the end, it's Molly alone who pieces together a string of clues and forestalls the murder of a third victim. Rambling, repetitive and lacking the author's often distinctive use of Indian lore to enliven the plot (here, there's only a token bow in that direction). Molly's a nice enough girl but no match for Hager's police chief Mitch Bushyhead (Ghostland, etc.) in charisma or competence. A pretty dull excursion.

Pub Date: Dec. 1st, 1992
ISBN: 0-89296-493-6
Page count: 272pp
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 1992


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