Berkley, Sep 2008, $24.95
Denver Journal investigative reporter Catherine McLeod assumes the sniper’s failed assassination attempt of her in her home is tied to one of her stories, past or present. She eliminated a random drive by, and a visit by Arapaho elder Norman Whitehorse affirms her theory. He informs her she is Arapaho; having been adopted his revelation about her roots is awesome and frightening.
Her former husband demands Catherine flee the big city for the relative safety of his mountain ranch, but she refuses. Instead the intrepid journalist continues her investigation into what she believes is the story that has made her a target; Catherine reports the efforts of her “people” and that of the Cheyenne to regain over twenty million acres of land deeded by treaties but stolen during the 1864 Indian massacre at Sand Creek. However, Catherine is stunned by the violence of her unknown murderous stalker on the innocent and that her inquiry leads to DC.
With Arapaho attorney Vicky Holden taking a breather though she makes an appearance in BLOOD MEMORY, Margaret Coel introduces her fans to a new heroine Catherine. She is terrific as she begins to learn about her heritage while also working an investigation into the land debate. The story line is action-packed with a fresh outlook and an incredible plausible but unexpected climax. Hopefully Ms. Coel’s two brave women find a common cause in a future tale (sort of like Philip R. Craig and William G. Tapply did with Brady Coyne and J. W. Jackson); if not readers will still have two strong Arapaho heroines to count on for excellent thrillers.