A dash of geology, a touch of archaeology, nearly a cup of geography, and a healthy dose of action and mystery come together is this first novel by Robert Snow. Abigail is very easy to identify with, making her a fun character to ride along with. The book is sprinkled with Spanish words and sayings, and while I had hoped for a little more in this realm (like some northern NM slang), the book is not less for leaving it out. The sparse population of the area is used to affect, and it is very realistic how newcomers are quickly identified as such by the locals.
Occasionally the plot was a little predictable, but the main plot line I did not have figured out until near the end. I liked that the oftentimes deadly weather of sudden storms was used to great affect in the second half of the book. While there were a few editorial things (like somehow editing notes indicating a section should be italicized) made it into the print, there were fewer than a handful. Northern NM is complicated with it’s mix of cultures. In this novel, primarily the Hispanic and Caucasian cultures are explored. I hope the further cultures (Latino, Mestizo, Native American, etc.) of the area are explored in future installments. Overall, a very enjoyable cozy mystery to sink into for a weekend.