Cliff Hanger

Lyons author Sandi Ault has her fingerprints all over Wild Indigo, an auspicious debut mystery novel inspired by Ault's love of the northern New Mexico landscape and its tangled Indian/Hispanic/Anglo cultures. Open the book and you'll soon understand that there's a good measure of Ault's own personality in the protagonist Jamaica Wild — who, like Ault, has a wolf companion and fast friends among the members of a pueblo community.

But the compelling mixture of Ault's real-life passions form only a starting point for the adventure that ensues; the beautifully researched page-turner turns downright spooky as the plot thickens into a posole of ancient traditions and bruja magic. This isn't Hillerman country, not one bit: Ault has a sure franchise in Wild, whose second New Mexico exploit is already on the way, and the series is purely her own.

Ault will sign copies of Wild Indigo today at 5 p.m. at Murder by the Book, 1574 Pearl Street; call 303-871-9401 for details.
Sun., June 24, 3 p.m.

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd